Queensland has rejected an edgy proposal that sought the freedom to stay nude in the state’s beaches. As a result, those who were craving to ditch bikinis and shots for birthday suits in Noosa beach are dazed.
On Wednesday, Police Minister Bill Byrne rejected the two petitions—a paper petition with 527 signatures and an online petition with 946– that demanded a “clothing optional beach” in the sunshine state.
Queensland has refrained from legalising nude beaches and stands out as the only Australian state that refuses nudity in beaches though there are reports of nudists converging unofficially at beaches on the Sunshine Coast.
The petitioners were expecting freedom for making beaches more “recreational” to sunbathe or swim “without the fear of prosecution.”
Minister Byrne said the existing laws will not be changed and cited the advice of state’s Public Safety Business Agency that Queensland’s wilful exposure laws are meant for protecting citizens and ensuring their safety, Brisbane Times reported.
“As such, I can advise that the Queensland government has no plans to change the current legislation dealing with wilful exposure,” Byrne said.
The minister ruled out any scope for a clothing optional beach at this point in time. The minister’s statement gave a setback to the efforts that were being made for making Noosa’s unofficial nude beach, Alexandria Bay, a legal one.
Flaying Byrne, Australian Sex Party representative Robin Bristow said: “Our state is 40 years behind the rest of Australia in legalising nude beaches.”
“We are the last state in Australia to make this simple change to legislation.
“How can we call ourselves the Smart State if our politicians can’t even move into the 21st Century,” Bristow asked and smashed Byrne’s argument that it was designed for the “protection of Queenslanders”.
“What are the people in Queensland being protected from? It is their choice to be on a nude beach and making such a claim is complete rubbish when we see that the rest of Australia has the freedom to visit the many clothing optional beaches up and down the coast’ he was reported to have said by the Sunshine Coast daily.