MARRIAGE equality advocates have criticised an ad opposing same-sex marriage for being harmful to children.
The ad, sponsored by the Australian Marriage Forum, began running on commercial television channels on Saturday night, and claims that allowing same-sex couples to marry would force a child to miss out on having a mother or a father.
Australian Marriage Equality director Rodney Croome said the ad was harmful to children of same-sex couples.
‘‘According to the Bureau of Statistics, tens of thousands of Australian children are currently in the care of same-sex couples, and these children deserve the same opportunities as other children, including the opportunity of having married parents,’’ he said.
‘‘I assume the launch of this campaign on the same day as the Sydney Mardi Gras Parade is meant to be provocative, but actually it just highlights how out of place anti-gay prejudice is in our increasingly inclusive and respectful society.’’
Australian Marriage Forum president David van Gend said he did not agree with Mr Croome that the ad could be harmful to children of same-sex couples, saying it was ‘‘complete speculation’’.
‘‘The aim is to re-frame the debate on same-sex marriage from the child’s perspective,’’ he said.
‘‘As a family doctor, I know that a child’s relationship with their mother and with their father is irreplaceable and vital.’’
The ad screened on channels 7 and 9, but was pulled from broadcast by SBS.
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