In the coming weeks, Australians will have the opportunity to vote on the issue of same-sex marriage in the postal plebiscite. At Temple & Webster, we support diversity in the workplace and recognise the rights of our LGBTIQ employees to live and work free of prejudice and discrimination and with all of the essential freedoms enjoyed by other members of our organisation and community. We are proud of our warm, inclusive team who bring their best and most passionate selves to work each day and empower their teammates to do the same, which includes supporting our LGBTIQ community. As the postal vote approaches, we wanted to share with you a little more about our CEO Mark Coulter and his Mum Margaret and why they support the yes vote.

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T&W CEO Mark Coulter and his Mum Margaret on Mark’s wedding day.

Margaret

Mark is my third child and youngest son.  I have four wonderful children, all so different – but I am so proud of them all.

When Mark first told me he was gay, I think I had known for a while. As a mother, you of course worry that your children are going to be safe and happy.

I was so honoured when Mark asked me to walk him down the aisle at his wedding in Greece last year. It was such a wonderful day, full of joy and happiness. Mark’s long term partner (now husband), Adam, is such a wonderful addition to the family. I know that with Adam, Mark is going to be ok, even when I’m no longer around.

It does make me sad to think Mark & Adam’s relationship is not on the same level as his brother’s, or as mine and my husband of 52 years. As a mother, I am going to be voting yes in the upcoming postal vote as I believe Mark deserves to be treated the same as his brother.

When Mark first told his Dad and I about starting Temple & Webster with his friends, we were (again) a little apprehensive. We were worried about Mark’s future, and whether he was doing the right thing giving up the good career path he was on.

Now I am so proud of what Mark and the team at Temple & Webster have achieved. I think I know the website better than he does!

Mark

Mum is definitely the one who gave me my love for the home. Although she doesn’t like to admit it, she has immaculate taste and her homes have always been on trend and beautiful. Thank you Mum!

Marrying Adam in Greece last year was such an incredible and life-changing experience, especially being surrounded by our friends and family. Even though we had been together for 14 years, the day after our wedding felt different. For whatever reason, we now feel like a “proper” unit – facing the future as a team.

I am lucky to say I have amazing and accepting parents. Being gay can sometimes be challenging – I often feel like a square peg in a round hole. Starting and now running a publicly listed company is one of those round holes! However Mum has always been there to support me and give me confidence, including regularly baking for the entire Temple & Webster team in the early days!

If I didn’t have parents and friends who accepted me as I am, who recognised my relationship with my partner of 14 years, and treated us as equals, I don’t think I would have had the courage to start Temple & Webster with my co-founders or run it today.

While marriage equality is foremost about love and the celebration of a union regardless of gender, for me it is a broader issue. It is about how gay people are seen by society and subsequently how they feel about themselves. As a business builder and CEO, I would love to give the message to the next generation of square pegs, that they are just as wanted as the round ones! I believe Australia can only be a happier and more productive place as a result.

Australian Marriage equality logos

See Temple & Webster’s formal letter of support for marriage equality and check out other businesses and organisations who support the cause at www.australianmarriageequality.org

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