Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

A Message from Defence Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexua (LGBTQIA)+ Champions

4 March 2024

A diverse and inclusive workforce encourages different ideas and innovation. It enhances our ability to adapt to rapidly evolving strategic environments and the changing nature of warfare. Reflecting on this reality, we are proud to continue Defence’s participation in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade on Saturday 2 March 2024.

This year’s theme is ‘Our Future’. Defence’s interpretation of the ‘Our Future’ theme is ‘Our Future, Your Future, Together’. We are marching into a future where Defence capability is underwritten by the recognition that strength is amplified by diversity and inclusion. The future force is an inclusive force, one where our diverse Australian community can see themselves both reflected and represented.

Defence’s participation in Mardi Gras provides an opportunity for us to celebrate the diversity and contribution of our people, to demonstrate respect, and to share in the pride of our LGBTQIA+ colleagues, their Group or Service and families, veterans and allies. As the LGBTQIA+ Champions, we are proud to be marching as part of this year’s contingent. Defence will be illuminating Defence Headquarters in Canberra in colours representing the global Pride movement as a show of strong support for our LGBTQIA+ personnel, and the community we serve. This will coincide with Mardi Gras.

We encourage you to engage with this year’s parade and theme of ‘Our Future’, contribute to Defence’s efforts to build an inclusive culture, and look out for the Defence contingent during the ABC’s live broadcast of the event.

There are some simple ways you can build LGBTQIA+ inclusion culture in your teams, such as:

Rowena Bain
First Assistant Secretary
Ministerial and Executive Coordination
and Communication Division

Anthony Rawlins, DSC, AM
Major General
Head Force Design