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Old 10-10-2011
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Default "Transphobia" yields court-ordered fine in Australia

Man ordered to pay transsexual neighbour $15,000 compensation for transphobia

By Tony Keim
The Courier-Mail
October 10, 2011 1:59PM


A MAN has been ordered to pay his neighbour $15,000 compensation for threatening to burn down her house and claiming she kept her genitals "in a jar".

The Queensland Civil and Administration Tribunal was told that Jason Lewis Ronoff's alleged discrimination toward his transsexual neighbour, Jo Brosnahan, was an act of "transphobia" - a lead cause in the victimisation of and violence toward transgender people.

QCAT member Dr Bridget Cullen-Mandikos, in an 11-page decision, ordered Ronoff pay Ms Brosnahan compensation for the "vilification" and "harassment" caused under Queensland's Anti Discrimination Act 1991.

"This unfortunate, and all too common, story about the lack of tolerance for members of Queensland's transgender community begins in the dark hours past midnight on the 9th of April 2009," Dr Cullen-Mandikos said.

"On that evening Ms Brosnahan was awoken by the sound of her neighbour (Ronoff) wrenching the palings off her fence.

"Accompanied by a group of apparently intoxicated friends, Mr Ronoff screamed obscenities in Ms Brosnahan's direction and threatened to burn her house down."

The tribunal was told Ms Brosnahan remained hidden inside her home during the ordeal and felt "alone in the darkness, fearing for her safety".

Ms Brosnahan, who was assisted at the hearing by the Australian Transgender Support Association of Queensland, gave evidence she was awoken in the dead of night by loud "aggressive yelling and screaming".

"I looked out my bedroom window and saw three males and one female ... (and) I recognised my neighbour (Ronoff) to be one of these people," Ms Brosnahan told the hearing.

"I saw him (Ronoff) mouth the words 'You (anti-gay expletive deleted), you have your (genitals) in a jar'."

"I have then heard who I believe is my neighbour shout to one of his friends: 'Has anyone got a box of matches so we can burn the (anti-gay expletive deleted) place down?'."

For his part, Ronoff failed to appear to defend the allegations of discrimination levelled at him by Ms Brosnahan during the hearing.

But, in an unsigned letter to QCAT, Ronoff claimed Ms Brosnahan had shown aggressive behaviour toward him before the incident.

Ronoff also asserted he did not have any issue with Ms Brosnahan's "gender identity".

Dr Cullen-Mandikos said Ronoff's letter to the Anti-Discrimination Commission, dated February 12, 2010, failed to fully address Ms Brosnahan's "specific complaint" and was of "little assistance in determining what actually happened".

The hearing was told transphobia within the community continued to disenfranchise people such as Ms Brosnahan.

"Transphobia within our community continues to lead to victimisation and violence, and disenfranchises persons who we should equally value as contributing members of society," Dr Cullen-Mandikos said.

"The negative effects of transphobia have been carefully studied in an academic context and highlight the challenges that persons such as Ms Brosnahan face over their lifetimes, as a consequence of the ignorance and intolerance of others."

She ordered Ronoff pay Ms Brosnahan compensation, but said there was "little benefit" in ordering he issue a "public apology" for his behaviour.

"I see little benefit in making such an order ... for the reason I have little confidence that Mr Ronoff will comply with the terms of same," Dr Cullen-Mandikos said.
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Old 10-10-2011
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Nail his balls to a stump,,,,,,,then push him off the stump.
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Old 10-10-2011
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Um.... ponders if any court in the US would come to the same conclusion with similar circumstances. I doubt it.
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Old 10-12-2011
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Her neighbour is a jackass, and what makes matters worse is that he is a jackass with a penchant for violence. The fine doesn't seem like very much of a punishment to me, and I hope that he doesn't take the fine as incentive to attempt further violence towards her.
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