It’s a miracle

• Members of Notre Dame’s LGBTQIA club Stripes celebrate their first open day. Photo by Steve Grant.

IT’S taken them more than a decade, but Notre Dame’s queer community finally has their own club on the Fremantle campus.

Members of Stripes were enjoying their first presence at a university open day on Sunday, noting they already had the second-biggest mailing list amongst student clubs.

“People have been very supportive, and not only want to be an ally, the want to help out and join,” Stripes vice president Grace Cuddihy told the Herald.

Ms Cuddihy said they’d prepared members for possible backlash, as their Sydney counterparts copped homophobic abuse when they tried forming a club.

“But all we got is support, it’s been fantastic,” Ms Cuddihy said.

Stripes president Benji Rabeling said while Notre Dame had lifted a ban on using the rainbow flag on campus, it had to be used discretely and couldn’t be hung from windows to be visible from the street.

“We walked on eggshells for a few months and felt we were in a trial phase,” Ms Cuddihy said.

She said the club had been approved by former vice chancellor Celia Hammond just before she left the uni for her successful tilt at the federal seat of Curtin for the Liberal party.

At the time, Labor had tried to paint Ms Hammond as out-of-step with the electorate because of her opposition to gay marriage.

by STEVE GRANT

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