Singing, cheers and tears erupted across Australia following the overwhelming result in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage.
The country decidedly voted yes to marriage equality in its voluntary postal survey. More than 12.7 million across the country, 79.5% of the population, took part in the survey with every state and territory returning a majority “yes.”
Results were handed down by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday, November 15 where 61.6% voted in favor of marriage equality, giving the government a mandate to allow same sex couples to marry.
It’s been a difficult, stressful period for many in the LGBTQI community in Australia, and the result comes as great relief.
“Australians voted for marriage equality. They voted ‘Yes’ for fairness, they voted ‘Yes’ for commitment, they voted ‘Yes’ for love,” said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Celebrity supporters of marriage equality from the likes of Ellen DeGeneres, American comedian and singer Sam Smith, were elated at the result.
Sam Smith posted an elated video to Instagram and shared excitement that he’s “gonna be a bridesmaid.”
“It’s a g’day. Way to go Australia,” Ellen DeGeneres posted on twitter under the hashtag #MarriageEquality.
Other celebrities are also sending love and congratulations to Australia.
American pop singer Adam Lambert posted, “Wooohoooo marriage equality in Australia!”
Miley Cyrus also wrote; “Yes!!!!! Congrats Australia! Every step taken is one closer to World Peace! Love love love you! Proud to be Australian by association lol!”
The nation’s parliament will now be under enormous pressure to pass a bill legalizing that right.
“And now it is up to us in the parliament of Australia to get on with it,” Prime Minister Malcolm told reporters in Canberra.
Whatever the government decides, LGBTQI people in Australia should feel, for the first time in years, a strong base of support from the Australian public.