Richardson-Self, Louise, Bronwyn Fielder and Douglas Ezzy. 2020. “The aftermath of marriage equality in Australia: Religious Freedom and LGBTQ+ non-discrimination.” Same-sex Relationships,  Law and Social Change, ed. Frances Hamilton and Guido Noto La Diega, 91 – 108. London: Routledge.


This chapter combines empirical data from the 2018 pilot study with philisophical and legal aspects of the issue of religious freedom and LGBT+ rights in relgiously affiliated workplaces in Tasmania, Australia.

Ezzy, Douglas, Bronwyn Fielder, Angela Dwyer and Louise Richardson-self. 2021 “LGBT+ Equality, religious freedom and government funded faith based religiously affiliated workplaces.” The Australian Journal of Social Issues, 00:1 – 17.

This paper examines the experiences of ten LGBT+ teachers employed in religiously affiliated schools in Tasmania and New South Wales, The aim of the paper is to document the differing experiences of these LGBT+ teachers, examining whether the distinctive state-based anti-discrimination legislation has an impact on their lives. The small number of cases examined here suggests that the state difference in anti-discrimination legislation has a significant impact on LGBT+ peoples’ job security and career development. 

 Richardson-Self, Louise, Elenie Poulos and Sharri Lembryk. The Conversation. Nov 19, 2021. “The debate about religious discrimination is back, so why do we keep hearing about ‘religious freedom?”


“It is notable that the Religious discrimination bill is ostensibly about religious discrimination, but in public discourse we discuss “religious freedom”. This confusion isn’t helped by their labelling on the attorney-general’s department website as “the religious freedom bills”.” This article unpacks this issue and looks at the motivation behind the bill.

Poulos, Elenie. The Conversation. Nov 25, 2021. “New religious discrimination bill will cause damage to Australian society that will be difficult to heal”. 

This article examines the effect the religious discrimination bill could have on Australian society, should it come into law.  

Ezzy, Douglas. The Conversation. Feb 9. 2022. “Only 19% of Australians agree religious schools should be able to ban LGBT+ teachers”.

Using quantitive data from Australian Survey of Social Attitudes in 2021, the article questions the assumption that that Australians and Christians in particular support the right of religiously affiliated schools to sack LGBT+ teachers. 

Ezzy, Douglas. 2023. Education, Religion and LGBTQ+ in Australia. Journal of Beliefs and Values.



This paper examines the religiosity, sexuality, and attitudes towards same-sex relationships among young people who were students at religiously affiliated schools in Australia and the staff who work in these schools, drawing on a national representative survey. 

Fielder, Bronwyn and Douglas Ezzy. 2023. Religious Freedom for Whom? How conservative Christianity erodes the religious freedom of those it seeks to discriminate against. Australian Journal of Political Science.



There is a common misconception that to be LGBTQ+ and religious
is incompatible. This article deconstructs this binarised
understanding, arguing that it delegitimises both sexual and
gender identity and also the religious identity of some LGBTQ
+ people, hindering their religious freedom.

McLeay,  Angus, Elenie Poulos and Louise Richardson-Self. 2023. The shifting Christian right discourse on religious freedom in Australia. Politics and religion, 16 (2): 197 – 218.



Political debates over religious freedom in Australia became prominent in the context of marriage equality, achieved in 2017. The Australian Christian Right (ACR) has driven these debates, but there is little research focusing on its discourse of religious freedom. This article examines a range of texts from ACR actors. Using discourse and theoretical analyses, we identify three key turns in the religious freedom rhetoric of the ACR: “ontological security,” “existential stress,” and “meaning vertigo.” We also explore how mimetic ACR discourse is compared to the United States’ Christian Right (USCR). As with the USCR, this research demonstrates how the ACR—suffering meaning vertigo and aiming to re-secure its previously taken-for-granted worldview—has successfully reframed the discourse of religious freedom by positioning itself as a besieged minority.



Ezzy, Douglas, Lori Beaman, Angela Dwyer, Bronwyn Fielder, Angus McLeay, Simon Rice and Louise Richardson-Self. 2023. LGBTQ+ non-discrimination and religious freedom in the context of government-funded, faith based education, social welfare, health care and aged care. Journal of Sociology, 59(4), 931-951.



Anti-discrimination laws around the world have explicitly protected LGBTQ+ people from discrimination with various levels of exceptions for religion. Some conservative religious organisations in Australia are advocating to be allowed to discriminate against LGBTQ+ people in certain organisations they manage. The political debate in Australia has focused on religiously affiliated organisations that provide services in education, social welfare, health care, and aged care. We argue that religious exceptions allowing discrimination should be narrow because they cause considerable harm, reinforce, disadvantage and because LGBTQ+ people are deserving of respect and rights. We draw on a national representative survey to demonstrate that the views of some conservative religious lobby groups do not represent the views of the majority of religious people in Australia or the views of the majority of Christian people.