Central QLD’s pride grows with Same Sex Marriage rally
FOR Rebecca Leeks, coming out as a homosexual woman in Rockhampton a decade ago was simply not an option.
"I was too scared to come out when I lived in Rockhampton. Scared of bullying and of being ostracised," Rebecca said.
The 32-year-old, now on the Committee of Equal Love and campaigning for marriage equality in Australia, said she had grown very proud of the region in the years since.
"Growing up here was a bit difficult, but that was a long time ago now and I think people's perceptions have really changed...I am really proud of the CQ community, I think we have come a long way."
And the Central Queensland community have stepped up for Rebecca, as she prepares for the Marriage Equality rally to hit the streets on Sunday afternoon.
"People's perceptions have really changed; it has been no different to the reception that we get talking to people in Sydney or Brisbane or Melbourne," Rebecca said, reflecting on the promotion work that had exposed her to the wider parts of CQ.
Rebecca said the acceptance was one she had seen in all facets of the community, not just the younger generation.
"That sort of support is right through the community, not just certain pockets," she said.
"All aspects of society I think...it is right through all of our lives and it is a great time to be a part of the community."
During the rally on Sunday, the march will pass through Capricornia MP Michelle Landry's office to deliver an open letter in support of marriage equality.
The MP is not a supporter of same sex marriage, but has said in the past that if an "overwhelming majority" of the community were in support, she would back it in parliament.
"This is what we want Michelle Landry and Ken O'Dowd (Flynn MP) to understand by putting the rally on; people in Rockhampton are not backwards. We're not homophobic," Rebecca said.
Join the movement
Interested in flying the rainbow flag on Sunday?
Where: The rally will meet at the Riverfront, outside Saigon Saigon
When: 1pm, Sunday August 16