Election special No 7 – $200 each! Coalition to fund straight couples

This election we have eagerly been awaiting yet more socially regressive policies from the major parties. This one however had slipped under the radar until the folk at Same same drew our attention to it.



Tony Abbott’s Coalition isn’t just against giving same-sex couples the right to marry, they’re also promising they’ll give heterosexual marriages a helping hand to the tune of a $200 voucher each.

On the Australian Christian Lobby’s Australia Votes guide to the election, the Liberal National Coalition was asked: “What will your party do to encourage marriage and resilience in couple relationships?”

Here’s the surprising response: “The Coalition will provide a $200 voucher to all couples when they register their intention to marry, which will be redeemable on an approved marriage education, counselling or parenting skills service.

“Couples can use this voucher before or after their wedding to choose the service that best suits their needs, be it one which assists in developing communication skills, conflict resolution, financial management, parenting skills, or for counselling services if problems arise in a marriage.”

“The Coalition will provide a $200 voucher to all couples when they register their intention to marry.”

While the Coalition’s refusal to support marriage equality leaves same-sex families with kids out in the cold, they add: “The Coalition, if elected, will place a greater emphasis on prevention and early intervention as a means of ameliorating the negative consequences of poverty, family dysfunction and social exclusion.”

They also reiterated their stance on marriage: “The Coalition policy supports the current definition of marriage contained in the Marriage Act.”

“Any change to the policy would be a matter for the Party Room in the future, as is the case with all policies,” their response added, concluding: “Tony Abbott supports the existing definition of marriage.”

The Australian Labor Party’s policy on the increasingly uncontroversial issue is also well known, and reiterated on the ACL’s website:

“The Rudd Labor Government believes that all people are entitled to respect, dignity and the opportunity to participate fully in society regardless of their sexuality.

“When the issue of same sex marriage has previously been considered by Parliament, Federal Labor has allowed each MP and Senator a conscience vote according to their own personal views.

“This reflects the fact that people of good will can hold different positions on this fundamental matter.”

Same Same has sought confirmation from the Liberal Party on their marriage voucher policy, and will update this story if/when we hear back.


This policy, as well as being highly discriminatory towards not only same sex couples but also to hundreds of thousands of men and women in de facto relationships, many of which are of long standing and are legally recognised to all intents and purposes as equivalent to marriage, assumes that these “marriage preparation” courses actually deliver the goods in terms of preserving relationships and lowering the rate of divorce.

However no valid objective peer-reviewed data has ever been available to support that notion

Since it is a project of the mad mullahs at the ACL, do atheists and other non-believers, or non-Christians for that matter, have to sign up?

Do celebrants have to hand out the voucher or will it be available from your local Coalition MP’s office?

And is it available for straight couples entering their second, third or subsequent marriages? Some MPs may be personally interested in that.

The Antibogan would probably prefer a new microwave. 😉


34 thoughts on “Election special No 7 – $200 each! Coalition to fund straight couples

    • I’m a fierce defender of gay marriage Steve, you will never win. Gay marriage is the future. Marriage for all is the future. Muslims in Multi relationships, children for multi partner relationships and children for gay couples. It’s the future, get with the times.

  1. I’m bisexual steve where do I fit in? I have two regular sexual partners one male and one female and I would like to be married to both of them if it would be possible.

    • No that would be your anti gay and bisexual view chmmr. My girl friend and I have been together for 3 years and nearly a year ago we invited a male friend to our apartment for a 3 some. This turned into strong feelings between the 3 of us and we now all live together and would one day want to be married to the same man. Sorry if this doesn’t fit in with your old fashioned views chmmr.

      • Laura, perhaps chmmr wasn’t being anti-gay or anti-bi, but anti polygamy or anti-polyamory???
        And those things have been around a lot longer than monogamy, so technically it’s you with the more old fashioned views 🙂

        • help me get with the times Laura! is there something i should read or watch to become as enlightened as you?
          i’m sick of being so boring. why am i so boring Laura? Why?
          You try and leave constructive comments on the internet but they’re so boring. i just want to be as cool and interesting as you laura, pls halp pls!!!

        • Would it kill you to watch an adult film involving more than two people James? Really you need to take the cotton wool off your eyes and see the real world.

        • So that’s acceptable? What about Muslims that are in multi partner relationships? Should they get treated with the same disrespect? It’s about time that we acknowledged that there is a large percentage of people in relationships with more than two people who deserve recognition. I don’t know anything about Islam,but if a relationship involves more than two people than obviously there is two people of the same gender involve and this is anti gay to not respect and acknowledge these people.

        • If you like how Muslims live, go live with the Muslims. If you like how the Aussies live, go and live like an Aussie there.

        • Thanks Laura, your contribution has been invaluable (and not psychotic one bit) to this discussion. I watched all that porn and now i’m muslim and bi and want to be in a relationship with you and your boyfriend and girlfriend. PM me and let’s get this future rolling. You in Steve?

        • Muslim multi partner relationships are being disriminated against also. They are just as legitimate as relationships with only two partners. By nature any relationship involving more than two people is also gay and is often discriminated against in this tebgard.

        • In actual fact very few Muslims have more than one wife, even the most conservative ones. The main reason for polygamy in ancient societies was to ensure living children since maternal and infant mortality was rife. Children worked alongside adults in early hunter-gatherer and agricultural societies, harvesting grain and herding animals.

          That is not the case any more. And Islam does not permit forced marriages (despite what some of its backward believers would have you think) and only permits plural marriages if the principal wife agrees – and few do. Why would they?

          Asian cultures used to allow polygamy also but most do not now. It has no advantage to the woman, and polyandry is so rare that its existence is not even recognised in law, even though in terms of sexual activity it is more in tune with human sexual behaviour.

        • So that is really the law? Only one wife for a Muslim man. That’s poor. Really, that’s discrimination. Who is to say who can and can’t marry. I don’t buy that.

  2. Y’know, I’m not usually one to say “A religious person is trying to impose their religion on us” normally, because there are too many cases of this being accused unfairly (JFK leaps to mind).

    But this. Totally this.
    I’m Anglican, and when I got married there was no wedding counselling. We met with the vicar, he filled out our intention to wed form, and asked what hymns we wanted. No issues, No counselling, probably because the Vicar knows that if we’re planning to get married we don’t want someone to give us permission, and also, probably, because the Anglican church has had a much more tolerant view of divorce than the Catholic church, so has a mindset of “Well, rightly or wrongly, it’s up to you to make your own mistakes”

    But this is exactly what the Catholic church does, as part of their key practices for marriage. You must have pre-marriage classes, must develop financial planning skills (To hell with all the many couples who have lived together before marriage, developing their own skills), must decide about plans for children, and must plan safeguards to prevent against divorce.

    Seriously, this is annoying. I mean, if you’re a Muslim you can’ts say “I’m a Muslim” without being accused of pushing your faith on others, but Abbot is allowed to push a policy forward that will encourage marriages in the Catholic style and everyone’s cool with it?

  3. I’m not sure why this article hasn’t been updated but the coalition replied to SameSame saying that same sex couples could redeem the vouchers for relationship counselling as well. There’s plenty of secular relationship education out there – Relationships Australia springs to mind.

    I don’t think $200 is enough, but i think supporting relationships is a good thing.

    “However no valid objective peer-reviewed data has ever been available to support that notion”
    is false, there’s a bunch of research that shows benefits of skills-based relationship education, especially for couples at a higher risk of relationship deterioration.

    I’m not Liberal, i’m quite left-leaning, but this policy was the only good thing to come out of September. It’s not a religious thing or a sexuality thing, it just seems like an effort to increase relationship stability and satisfaction.

      • but the point of a lot of relationship education or premarital counselling is that it’s PREVENTATIVE of relationship breakdown. So you can pay $350 through Relationships Australia for a weekends training session thing (which is like 10+ hours i think), minus $200 from the government voucher and you’re paying $150.

        Hopefully this $150 prevents you from needing intensive counselling which is more expensive.
        My understanding about the medicare subsidies was that was for individuals only, not couples. You can get some helpful psychologists who twist things around so you can use medicare for Relationship Education, but most don’t.

        Look, 60% of people who marry stay together for the rest of their life, and a bunch of these people don’t do premarital counselling. BUT for the other 40%, this could be a really helpful thing.

    • How could same sex couples redeem the voucher for marriage counselling (Which the article stated would be provided when intention to wed forms are completed) when same sex couples are not allowed to wed in Australia?

      This isn’t me being snarky-it’s something I am wondering about.

      • The article i read said it wasn’t just available for couples marrying, but ALL couples to be used on relationship education. This could be marriage counselling or just relationship education, or even financial counselling.

        I don’t think any real logistics have been released, and yes, same sex couples wouldn’t be able to do premarital counselling on account of not being able to get married. But they’d still be able to use it for other programs to help strengthen their relationship.

        I’m also curious about how the’d go about redeeming this, as well as other couples like de facto or couples already married.

  4. A quick note to add some reality. Marriage is a hetro thing. That’s that. Democracy is not always a good thing .It can be corrupted, not just by money, but also apathy. Suddenly, we have such smart people, and history is wrong again! Some had slavery, masses agreed it was OK, so they accepted it,

    This issue (HOMOSEXUAL MARRIAGE) cannot compare to this mistake (and then it does). Then it was fought to eliminate slavery and change back to how it was before.

    This is what is happening with homosexual marriage. This will be like when they were trying to legalize slavery. Some would have said, go to the bible for guidance on the subject, others thought they could disregard something written so long ago and not relevant to the time they were now living in now, I think I might have heard something like that about this strange concept.

    I could go on with more, but that should do you all.
    It is A good thing that the Gov would also like to embrace this valuable asset. Ask your Mums and Dads.

    • Marriage should be for everyone Steve. What planet must you come from to think that it’s just a hetero thing, i’ll never know. I just hope you never get a taste for men steve, because only then will you realize how discriminative you are being. I hope you never desire more than one wife also. Bet you’re the biggest hippocrite out.

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