Tina and Renee Dixson have been together for a decade now, not only as a couple but partners in everything they do. When Renee was 21, she established the first in the region LGBTIQ human rights organisation that was providing psychosocial, medical and legal support to the LGBTIQ community. One of the achievements of her organisation was presentation of a CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women) shadow report on the human rights violations of LBT women in the UN which resulted in historic recommendations for their state. Unfortunately, political landscape and visibility of their work at that time, drove them to seek protection.
In Australia, Renee has turned to art as a means of making a change, obtaining justice and healing trauma. Renee is using art as a human rights tool. In 2016 Renee produced a social art project ‘Stories about Hope’ that explores concepts of human dignity and strength in stories of people from refugee backgrounds. ‘Stories about Hope’ have been shown across NSW and Victoria.
Tina has started her PhD in Social and Political Thought at the Institute for Social Justice at the Australian Catholic University. Tina’s thesis is focused on the lived experiences of queer refugee women viewed through the lenses of trauma theory and concepts of empowerment.
Tina has also been a member of a gender audit team conducting a review of the Global Compact on Refugees in Geneva. The goal of this advocacy was to ensure that the Global Compact on Refugees, being a historical addition to the Refugee Convention, provides meaningful inclusion of all groups (women, girls, LGBTIQ people etc) and effectively responds to their needs across the journey from displacement to safety.
Driven by the desire to support women like them, Tina and Renee started a Queer Sisterhood Project – a peer run & peer support group for queer refugee women. The group meets every 6-8 weeks on the premises of Twenty10 incorporating GLCS NSW in Sydney.
For more information:
Tina Dixson www.tinadixson.com.au
Renee Dixson www.reneedixson.com.au