Royal Commission into
Defence and Veteran Suicide
The Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide is inviting interested members of the public and institutions to make submissions to the Royal Commission.
DLVA is encouraging, where appropriate, members to make an individual submission.
The terms of reference can be found here,
Information on how to make an online or paper submission found here,
Royal Commission Homepage
The Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide was established on 8 July 2021. Under the Letters Patent, the Royal Commissioners are required to produce an interim report by 11 August 2022 and a final report by 15 June 2023. The Letters Patent set out the Royal Commissioners’ terms of reference.
Source: Royal Commission About Page
Serving in Silence? Australian LGBTI Military Service since World War II
Over 75 years of LGBTI military service in Australia
To commemorate 25 years since Australia lifted the ban on LGB military service, this exhibition charts the changing experiences of LGBTI servicemen and women since World War II.
It brings together photos, objects, documents and the life stories of current and former service personnel to explore the adversities, challenges and achievements of LGBTI Defence members.
Feb 27th to March 7th
Location: The Convent, Daylesford
Nestled on the crest of Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens, over-looking Daylesford, The Convent boasts expansive views of the countryside and township below. A feast for the senses, the gallery is more than a three level haven of fine art in an historic 19th century mansion.
Open during normal business hours, 7 days, 10am – 4pm
Saturday Feb 27th, 2pm
Exhibition Opening – Free ticketed event.
Noah Riseman to open with a talk on the study and exhibition.
Saturday Feb 27th, 3pm
First Forum commences.
Yvonne and guest to talk about their experiences and take questions.
Saturday March 6th, 2pm
Second Forum commences – Free ticketed event.
Sponsored by the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives and the Department of Veterans Affairs
Curators: A/Prof Noah Riseman (ACU), Dr Graham Willett (ALGA) and Dr Shirleene Robinson (Macquarie)
In November 1992, the Australian government overturned a longstanding ban on gays, lesbians and bisexuals serving in the Australian Defence Force. Transgender service would continue to be banned until September 2010. Yet, LGBTI people were serving in the military long before these milestones, with a range of experiences.
To commemorate 25 years since lifting the LGB ban, this exhibition showcases the history of LGBTI military service in Australia since World War II. The exhibition brings together photographs, objects, documents and the life stories of current and former service personnel to explore how LGBTI Defence members navigated their lives in the Royal Australian Navy, Australian Army, and Royal Australian Air Force. The exhibition includes tales of lesbian subcultures, witch-hunts targeting homosexuals for expulsion, kamp men in Papua New Guinea, participation in Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, and the changing Defence approaches to LGBTI service.
This exhibition derives from a larger research project on the history of LGBTI military service and is being sponsored by Department of Veterans Affairs.
Two books have been published based on the research for the above event and can be found here:
Serving in Silence?: Australian LGBT servicemen and women
Noah Riseman, Shirleene Robinson, Graham Willett
For the first time, Serving in Silence? reveals the integral role played by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender men and women in Australia’s military after the Second World War. Their powerful personal stories, recounted with searing honesty, illustrate the changing face of the Australian Defence Force, the pivotal role of military service in the lives of many LGBT Australians, and how they have served their country with distinction.
‘To put service before self in our Nation’s name is the essence of being a member of our Defence Force. Such commitment is to be respected and honoured. Yet, for too long, our LGBT personnel served in silence. This book gives voice to men and women who served in the face of prejudice and discrimination. It is an affirmation of how Australia and its Defence Force are changing for the better.’ — LIEUTENANT GENERAL DAVID MORRISON, former Chief of Army and 2016 Australian of the Year
The Australian Military and LGBTI Service since 1945
Noah Riseman, Shirleene Robinson
A depiction of the diverse ways LGBTI members of the Australian Defence Force have navigated life in a challenging social environment.
Since the Second World War the Australian military has undergone remarkable transformations in the way it has treated lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex service members: it has shifted from persecuting, hunting and discharging LGBTI members to embracing them as valued members who enhance the Force’s capabilities LGBTI people have served in the Australian military since its very beginnings, yet Australian Defence Force histories have been very slow to recognise this. Pride in Defence confronts that silence. It charts the changing policies and practices of the ADF, illuminating the experiences of LGBTI members in what was often a hostile institution. Drawing on over 140 interviews and previously unexamined documents, Pride in Defence features accounts of secret romances, police surveillance and traumatic discharges. At its centre are the courageous LGBTI members who served their country in the face of systemic prejudice. In doing so, they showed the power of diversity and challenged the ADF to make it a far stronger institution.