The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has confirmed gay couples that register a civil partnership will receive the same rights as straight married couples. These will include being able to live in rented accommodation at army bases, which is not open to unmarried couples.
Aldershot’s MP Gerald Howarth (pictured), who is also the Shadow Defence Minister in Michael Howard’s Opposition Team, branded the decision a “truly undesirable move”, claiming that it is immoral.
Mr Howarth, who has been an MP since 1983 said that the plans will be, “quite upsetting for families in the married quarters and I am personally very much opposed to it. I am emphatically against homosexual marriage and I voted against the bill.
This is a Christian country and Christian teaching is very clear on these matters and I am extremely concerned that young people today are being bombarded with literature which suggests that a homosexual relationship is the same as a heterosexual relationship, which it is not”
However, Michael Howard, who is Jewish, and is Conservative leader, did vote for the Civil Partnerships bill and enquiries made by PinkNews.co.uk to the Conservative Central Office (CCO) uncovered confusion over whether the statement made by Mr Howarth is party policy.
In a statement, the MoD said that “the Civil Partnership Act comes into force in December this year, and it will apply to the civil forces. Consequently, we will extend the same entitlements, allowances and benefits to same-sex couples, who choose to register with the civil partnership recognised in law, that are granted to married couples.”