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The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP), the organisation representing Australia’s psychiatrists, has come out in support of marriage equality based on the proven link between mental health and legal equality.

“Statistics show that for many individuals sadly expressing their sexuality can still be a distressing or traumatic experience due to discrimination they experience from their community, and our society at large,” RANZCP President Professor Malcolm Hopwood said.

“This can increase the likelihood of people experiencing mental health disorders.

“It is important that RANZCP supports the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Australia, as research shows that legislative inequality has a significant and deleterious impact on mental health and conversely, that there is a strong link between improved health outcomes and legislation change of this sort.”

Australian Marriage Equality said they’d make all federal politicians aware of the RANZCP’s views as they campaign in Canberra.

“The RANZCP’s statement reflects the research consensus that the stigma and disadvantage created by legal inequality impairs the mental health of the people treated unequally,” AME director Rodney Croome said.

“The RANZCP is a widely respected organisation and its statement will have a significant impact on the attitudes of law makers and on everyday Australians alike.”

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