Maranoa's view on marriage equality 'fair reflection': MP
A SLIGHT majority of the electorate of Maranoa are opposed to marriage equality - and its MP David Littleproud feels that is a fair reflection.
The findings were the result of a study completed by University of Melbourne on ABC Vote Compass results, revealing Maranoa as the only electorate in Australia that has a majority of voters opposed to gay marriage.
Most of the top 10 electorates most opposed to gay marriage are in regional Australia and are held by traditionally conservative parties, the LNP, Nationals, Liberals and Katter's Australian Party.
David Littleproud said the result suggested there was a diverse range of opinions on the issue, which has become topical thanks to the Turnbull Government's decision to hold a plebicite to decide it.
"I don't think it does anything negative to the people of Maranoa,” he said.
"Everyone's voices should be heard on this matter, and just because that differs, it shouldn't de-value us in any way.
"People reside in areas that are like-minded so I this isn't something that makes it unique to the rest of the world.”
Mr Littleproud also said the views of people who believed in traditional marriage were not being respected by advocates of marriage equality.
"I don't think it's healthy for the whole debate - it's very unhealthy that people's views aren't being respected,” he said.
"As long as you do it respectfully, I think both sides should have their say.
"It doesn't make it bad people.”
Hayley Keel, who is an affiliate member of the Roma-based group Anything But Straight, said she found the results disappointing.
However, she has always found Roma to be a welcoming place for the LGBT community.
"It makes me a bit disappointed, because I find Roma an open and welcoming place,” she said.
"People need to understand that everyone is human and they are entitled to love who they choose to love.
"It's upsetting that we're in the 21st Century and there are people who don't want that to happen.”
Spokeswoman for Australian Marriage Equality Shirleene Robinson said the key to growing support for marriage equality in rural areas was education.
"As people realise that LGBT people are their mates and coworkers, support for marriage equality will grow in Maranoa,” she said.