As celebrations sweep across Australia, the LGBTQ community, along with their allies, rejoice in the results of the marriage equality vote. Despite the controversial campaign that surrounded the plebiscite, love won. And won big! An overwhelming 79.5% of the population took part in the survey (12.7 million people), and in every state and territory, the majority voted "yes," with 61.6%.
We spoke with some of the Australian dads in our community on how they're feeling now the results are in and that the people of Australia support their right to marry.
Mike and Colin with Jack and Maple, Sydney, New South Wales
"The waiting is over, finally no more anxiety. 61 per cent were returned in favour of same-sex marriage, this is amazing. We are so pleased and extremely excited for the future, not just for us but everyone - straight or the LGBTIQ community. I'm so excited to tell Jack and Maple that we now can be married. Equality for all and proud to be Australian."
"First thing is to kiss Mike when I get home and tell Maple that men can marry men." - Colin
Dale and Paul with Alysia from Brisbane, Queensland, currently living in NYC
"The success of the marriage equality survey not only gives us hope that legally we will have equal rights and recognition with regards to marriage, but it also regains our confidence that Australian's (well a majority) want a country that is kind, accepting, progressive and treats each other with love and respect. That treat each other as equals."
"A successful 'yes' vote has made us feel loved, it's made us feel accepted/equal and it has given us hope that the future will be brighter for all children, regardless of their family structure. We are unique yes, but we also just wanted to be treated equally."
" YES Australia. YES to equality. YES to Love." - Dale
David and Billy with Christian, South Australia
"YES • YES • YES • YES • YES • YES • YES • YES • LOVE WINS! Soooo many tears of happiness. Words can not explain or express just how happy and relieved we are with the results this morning. We have been so anxious for so long and this emotional roller coast is finally coming to an end, well almost, now we just need it to pass through parliament. Most importantly though, there is a young man walking a little taller and a little prouder around his school yard knowing his country says YES. We will be have a few glasses of bubbles to celebrate once I'm home that is for sure! Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, raise a glass because love has won!" - Billy and David
Michael and Paul with Levi (and baby #2 any day now), Sydney, New South Wales
"So thrilled that love and compassion prevailed. This paves the way for greater acceptance of our family and a society where our children can grow up feeling truly equal." - Michael
Now it's up to the Australian parliament to vote on the issue, but Prime Minister Malcolm Turnball has said that they have a commitment to make same-sex marriage legal by Christmas! We can't think of a better way present than marriage equality.