The Australian Greens have slammed the Government's decision to wind back the Safe Schools Coalition after the conservative backbench demanded a review into the program.
"It is clear that Malcolm Turnbull has thrown LGBTI young people under the bus today by bowing to the right-wing backbench bullies and stripping back the Safe Schools program. If the likes of George Christensen can chalk this up as a victory, alarm bells will be ringing for LGBTI students and their families," Greens sexuality spokesperson Senator Robert Simms said.
"Mr Christensen is saying this is better than an inquiry, it is further than he was expecting the Education Minister to go, so I am deeply concerned that the LGBTI young people in our community are being swept under the rug. Rather than rolling it back, the Government should focus on rolling this program out and providing more support to LGBTI young people at school.
"It's National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence and it is so low of Malcolm Turnbull to give into his conservative backbench on this day by stripping back a vital anti-bullying program in place to save young LGBTI people's lives."
"The Safe Schools program is a lifeline for many young people who identify as transgender, gender diverse or intersex. Today the government has told these young people their safety and inclusion matters less than the outdated transphobic and homophobic views of the deep recesses of its backbench," Greens gender identity and intersex issues spokesperson Senator Janet Rice said.
"The Greens will stand with Safe Schools, and with all LGBTIQ young people and their families, to make sure this vital program remains resourced and active in Australian schools."