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WOMAN OF THE WEEK
22 April Louisa Wall
You have the Power: Woman of the Week
22 April Louisa Wall
Louisa Hareruia Wall is the New Zealand Member of Parliament who submitted a bill to legalise same-sex marriage in New Zealand. On 17 April 2013, the bill was passed in to law.
Louisa Wall was born in February 1972 in Taupo. Brought up in Waiatahanui near Taupo, Wall has Ngati Tuwharetoa and Waikato ancestry. She was named after her father's cousin Louis, who died on the day she was born.
Wall attended secondary school at Taupo-nui-a Tia College and earned qualifications from the Waikato Institute of Technology, the University of Waikato and Massey University.
She worked in the health field, identifies openly as a lesbian, and is an international sportswoman – a former national representative netball and rugby union player.
In 1988 Wall is reported to have become the youngest member of the "Young Internationals" netball squad, and in 1989, at age 17, she was named in the Silver Ferns netball team (New Zealand's national representative netball team). She also represented New Zealand in the Black Ferns women's rugby team.
In May 2012, Wall submitted a bill to legalise same-sex marriage in New Zealand to the private member’s bill ballot, and was subsequently drawn from the ballot and introduced in late July 2012.
On August 29th 2012, the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill passed its first reading with a vote of 80-40.
On the 17th of April 2013, the bill was passed into law, making New Zealand the 13th nation to allow same-sex marriage. At the third reading, Wall gave a ten-minute speech likening the passing of the bill to Treaty of Waitangi settlement acts previously passed by the New Zealand parliament.
When it was announced that the bill had passed, the public gallery broke out in song. Watch and listen to the experience here: http://mashable.com/2013/04/17/new-zealand-gay-marriage/
Created: 22/04/2013 | Last Updated: 22/04/2013