The current debate about the human rights of gays and lesbians is leaving vulnerable gay and lesbian people feeling devalued and at risk according to Freedom2b, a support organisation for gay and lesbian people of Christian backgrounds.

Freedom2b’s President, Michelle Kolev says: “Given the role played by conservative churches in the debate, we are particularly concerned for the welfare of same-sex attracted people from these churches.”

Kolev says that “The attacks by the Liberal National Party in Queensland and Katter’s Australian Party are strongly felt among lesbian, gay and bisexual people. The attacks on the rights of same-sex attracted people to marry are also keenly felt.”

“Groups such as the Australian Christian Lobby have made a particularly unhelpful contribution to the marriage debate, implying that there is only one viewpoint that Christians hold”, says Kolev. “Within every denomination, there will be people with a variety of views on issues such as the freedom to marry”, Kolev stated.

“Some churches are becoming increasingly uncomfortable and unwelcome spaces for many same-sex attracted people. This can create feelings of isolation, anxiety and depression for many same-sex attracted people of faith as they often feel they are stuck in the middle, torn between faith and sexual orientation”, Kolev said.

“Knowing that this vulnerability can be dangerous, we urge conservative Christian leaders to conduct themselves with sensitivity. We want to remind same-sex attracted Christians of the existence of support services such as Freedom2b, Lifeline, and the gay and lesbian welfare organisations in each State”.

At the same time, Ms Kolev also acknowledged and praised the excellent work being undertaken by community groups and some churches to enshrine the human rights of same-sex attracted people in law.

For further information, Michelle Kolev on 0403 987.723.