Research Project from COTA NSW

The below email was received from COTA NSW (Council of the Ageing), inviting people aged in their 60s, 70s, 80s and beyond to participate in an anonymous online survey as part of academic research. See below for more information and the link to the survey.

PERMISSION TO SPEAK: Giving older adults a voice in teaching health and aged care providers how to communicate about intimate matters.

Our sexuality changes as we age - but we know that many people in their 60s, 70s, 80s and beyond wish to remain sexually active.

We also know that health conditions and medications can affect sexuality and cause sexual problems. But it can be hard to find reliable, accurate information - especially if it's hard to talk to your health professional!

Alison Rahn - who spoke recently at the COTA NSW 50 Shades of Greying forum - is the lead researcher in a new study funded by the Australian Association of Gerontology. The outcome of this research will be training materials for health professionals to improve their communications skills with older people around sex and sexuality.

Alison is looking for people to participate in an anonymous online survey, which will take between 20 and 30 minutes to answer.

Your participation will be completely anonymous. You don't need to provide your name or any identifying details.

You don't have to participate - but your anonymous participation will help to make sure that health professionals have the skills and tools to have good discussions with older people about sex and sexuality - which is a win for everyone.

The survey link is here, and you can find more information on the study and the researcher by clicking the link.

Wagga Wagga Mardi Gras - March 9 2019

A contingent of 78ers traveled to Wagga Wagga to attend the inaugural Wagga Wagga Mardi Gras in March, an event that aims to raise the visibility of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex communities in the Riverina.

It was great to see a big roll-up for the event and we enjoyed mixing with locals and other visitors supporting the region after the Parade. Look out for us at the end of the month as we head to the Hay Mardi Gras, part of the Rainbow on the Plains Festival 29-31 March!

Pre-Mardi Gras with staff at BBC Studios

BBC Studios Australia & New Zealand hosted 78er Kate Rowe who talked with staff about queer history and the relevance of Mardi Gras in context of the world today.

JOY 94.9 Interview with Kate Rowe

JOY 94.9 is an LGBTI volunteer-based Melbourne (and online) community radio station committed to providing a voice for the diverse LGBTI communities, enabling freedom of expression, the breaking down of isolation and the celebration of our culture, achievements and pride.

On the eve of the 41st annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade, we look back on the origins of the now world-famous Sydney LGBTI pride extravaganza, as a series of gay rights marches by a brave group of activists, ending in arrests, shaming and unemployment.

Kate Rowe was one of the activists involved in the events of 1978, now proudly referred to as “The 78ers“, and she joins us to recount those events, explain why Mardi Gras is still important today, and what the theme of this year’s event– “Fearless” –means to her.

Click here to listen to the podcast of the interview with 78er Kate Rowe on

Fair Day 2019: Meet the 78ers

Sydney turned on the sunshine for Fair Day 2019 (Sunday Feb 17) and the 78ers spent the day meeting and talking with friends - both new and old.

Mardi Gras 78er Kate Rowe addresses the 2019 Fair Day in Sydney's Victoria Park as part of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras celebrations and commemorations.

Thanks to William Brougham for the video and some of the photos. Other photos by Steve Mclaren, Rebbell Barnes, Sandra Gobbo.

Photos & Video from Rainbow Immigration and Refugee forum

Good roll up and enthusiastic response to our wonderful speakers at yesterday’s forum Salon78: Rainbow Immigration and Refugees.

Thanks to speakers Betty Hounslow, Ken Davis, Mitchell Skipsey and Tina Dixson and chair Garry Wotherspoon. And thanks to attendees including those from the Asylum Seekers Centre, Amnesty International, Teachers for Refugees and the STARTTS Program.

The event was recorded and is available to view in full on YouTube by clicking here, or is included below. Thanks to William Brougham for the video.

The Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force, in which some 78ers were key movers in the 1980s, assisted overseas partners of LGBTIQ Australians to migrate here. Speakers include Betty Hounslow, Ken Davis, Mitchell Skipsey and Tina Dixson. Today, our community is outraged by the plight of LGBTIQ refugees and people seeking asylum.

(Video by William Brougham)

78ers Reunion 41

Reunion 41 will be held at the Colombian Hotel again on Wednesday 27th February, 5.00pm-8.00pm, with a special blessing by Mother Inferior. All 78ers and partners or guests are welcome to attend.

In 2018, First Mardi Gras held a special pre-Mardi Gras Parade 40th Anniversary event for 78ers and guests. This get together, Reunion 41, is on again this year. All 78ers and partners or guests are welcome to attend.

If you are joining us for Reunion 41, please RSVP to for catering purposes.

If you require lift access, please email us with an approximate time of arrival.

The 78ers Parade T-shirt will be available to pick up at Reunion 41. Otherwise, it will be available at the 78ers Parade assembly area.

We are looking forward to seeing you soon!

Salon78: Rainbow Immigration and Refugees

The Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force, in which some 78ers were key movers in the 1980s, assists overseas partners of LGBTIQ Australians to migrate here.

Today, 78ers are outraged by the plight of LGBTIQ refugees and asylum seekers.

Come along on Sunday February 10, 2019 to Salon78 presents Rainbow Immigration and Refugees and hear about services and campaigns to support these vulnerable members of our community.

Free event.

Video of Salon78 - Out and Loud, the Gay Liberation Quire

Salon 78 presents Out and Loud - The Gay Liberation Quire (1981 - 1987) at the Beresford in Sydney. The event took place on the 9th of December 2018 and was organised by First Mardi Gras Inc. This video presents an afternoon of performance and reminiscence with members of the original Gay Liberation Quire.

The Gay Liberation Quire (1981-87) reformed for one afternoon in December 2018 and performed a number of songs including 'Thank You Lord For Gay Liberation'. The event was hosted by First Mardi Gras Inc and took place at the Beresford in Sydney. #GayLiberationQuire #BeresfordSundays #FirstMardiGrasInc

Thanks to William Brougham for both these videos of the event.

Troye Sivan Interviews Two Mardi Gras ’78ers About LGBTIQ Activism

Troye Sivan, a queer Australian pop singer, sat down with two 78ers - Karl & Diane - to chat about LGBTIQ activism then and now, and the importance of knowing our history.

Thanks to Junkee for the opportunity to sit down with Troye and have these discussions. Watch the interview below, or read the article here:

Original video from

Video of Salon78 - Fighting for our rights - then and now

The 40th Anniversary of the first Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras is not only about the night of 24 June 1978, it also recognises the massive Drop the Charges Campaign that followed. Forty years later we have achieved a lot, but LGBTIQ people in many countries are still fighting for their rights.

Thanks to William Brougham for the video

78ers Fighting for our rights - then and now

In the forty years since the first Mardi Gras many gains have been achieved but LGBTQI people in many countries are still fighting for their rights. At this FREE special event on Sunday August 26 2018, 78ers reflect on the social and political context of the first Mardi Gras and its impact.

To attend this event, please register at Eventbrite:

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