WA returns Australia's second-highest Yes vote for same-sex marriage

Wednesday, 15 November 2017, 07:49:24 AM. West Australians have overwhelmingly voted in favour of same-sex marriage, returning the second highest Yes vote of any state in results of the national postal survey.

Perth celebrates the same-sex marriage result Video: Perth celebrates the same-sex marriage result (ABC News)

West Australians have overwhelmingly voted in favour of same-sex marriage, returning the second highest Yes vote of any state in results of the national postal survey.

Out of 801,575 votes returned in the state, 63.7 per cent of registered voters indicated Yes, with 36.3 per cent voting No.

The result was behind only Victoria, which recorded a 64.9 per cent Yes vote. The ACT posted the highest Yes vote of any territory, with 74 per cent.

External Link: Datawrapper - how WA voted in SSM survey External Link: Datawrapper - SSM vote state-by-state

'We're going to win'

For Neil Connor and Geoff Bishop, they don't want special treatment — just equality.

The couple were among about 1,000 people who flocked to Northbridge Piazza to see the results come in live at 7am.

Geoff Bishop and Neil Connery stand side by side smiling with rainbow flags around their neck. Photo: Geoff Bishop and Neil Connery celebrate the yes vote in the same-sex marriage postal survey. (ABC News: James Carmody)

"Relieved, happy, ecstatic, glad it's over. We're going to win!" Mr Bishop said.

"It's peace of mind for me. We are finally going to be treated equally," Mr Connor added.

The Mandurah couple have been together for 30 years and were married at the British Embassy in Perth in 2015. They were thrilled at the prospect of their marriage being recognised by their own country.

"Australia is about to recognise us as a couple. Our marriage is no longer going to be invisible," Mr Connor said.

Two women hug while celebrating the yes vote in the same-sex marriage postal survey. Photo: There were scenes of joy at Northbridge Piazza as people celebrated the result. (ABC News: Briana Shepherd)

The result carries extra significance with Mr Bishop having been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

"Geoff has stage four prostate cancer and he has been fighting it for four years," Mr Connor said.

"There's no doubt about it, we have been discriminated against in hospital before. Hopefully no more.

"We don't ask for special treatment, we ask for equality, no more than that and no conditions. Please get it done."

Both men shed tears as the results were read out.

Survey revealed a 'dark side'

Mr Connor said the strong support for same-sex marriage evident in the survey's results was overwhelming.

He said while the process had been full of positive experiences, with strong support among the gay community, it had also meant some very negative experiences.

"I've been amazed at how much the gay community has pulled together through this process," he said.

"The dark side has also come out and it's actually given it a voice that it didn't have before.

"It brought out an ugly side and I think there's some healing to do before we can move forward with this.

"It's taken us backwards as well as forwards."

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