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Equality minister Lynne Featherstone says government will consult on gay marriage and civil partnerships

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  1. “It’s up to the people really. The government will be consulting with all those with a stake.”

    Did the government ask the people before it introduced the Race Relations Act a generation ago? No. Because equality is not a matter for negotiation. Unfortunately Lynne Featherstone is treating this like a Proposition 8 issue.

  2. Good news. We are the closest to same sex marriage in the UK we have ever been. It is within reach.

  3. Stuart Neyton 3 Jul 2010, 6:31pm

    This is a good start and i hope we see something come of it as it would be the last legislative milestone towards true equality. I think it’s time to start looking into who in parliament would oppose granting full marriage rights to same-sex couples.

    “Unfortunately Lynne Featherstone is treating this like a Proposition 8 issue.”

    I totally agree with you on this. Issues like minority rights should never be “up to the people really” as it sets a dangerous precedent.

  4. I’ve never met the lady but I’ve read her blog and seen her on television, including in the Commons, During the election one political correspondent write that she always has the air of someone in the wrong aisle of a supermarket without her shopping list. The image seems to fit how she slightly bumbles around on every equality issue. Like, as is rightly said, suggesting a Prop 8 type situation for equal marriage. And very much so on trans issues, unfortunately. Is that fair?

  5. “Ms Featherstone said: “I think she’s moved on and the rest of the LGBT world needs to catch up.””

    I couldn’t have put it better!

  6. Jock S. Trap 4 Jul 2010, 8:30am

    While she’s ‘consulting the range of shareholders’ maybe she should ask why it is that LGBT people are completely equal in paying Taxes but not in the right to marriage?! I don’t remember anyone having to be ‘consulted’ for all LGBT taxpayers. Maybe rebates should be in order?

  7. Let hope the other parties (eg labour) and some of the gay organisations (eg stonewall) have also “moved on”! Gay marriage is an important issue to the gay community and shouldn’t be “balanced” with religious views and CPs are most definitely not “adequate”……..

  8. Since the majority of people in this country support marriage equality, what she’s really saying is that the government is once again looking for ways to pander to the minority of bigots who oppose it.

  9. Oh I really like her! And she has lovely teeth! :D

  10. Patrick James 4 Jul 2010, 3:16pm

    The question is, why are they hedging?

    Why are they consulting “stake holders”?

    If the ConDem is in favour of equality for gay marriage then why don’t they just do it?

  11. Patrick James 4 Jul 2010, 8:28pm

    I think this last comment is quite funny. Lynne Featherstone is asked about Theresa May and LGBT equality:

    Ms Featherstone said: “I think she’s moved on and the rest of the LGBT world needs to catch up.”

    So, LGBT people are to be lectured by Lynne Featherstone it seams.

    If Theresa May is now committed to LGBT equality why is she not pressing ahead with equality for gay marriage?

    Why is it that we keep hearing about “consultations” etc. ?

    Well I think the Conservatives are stalling. I don’t think it has anything to do with “consultations” or “stake holders”.

    If the Conservatives are having all of these consultations why don’t they tell us who they are consulting?

    I think that Theresa May is completely opposed to equality for gay people in marriage and I think that Lynne Featherstone knows that as well.

    I’m just letting you know what I think.

    It would be very easy for Theresa May to make her position on gay marriage known. She could just tell us.

    So, to Lynne Featherstone, I say, please stop talking such a load of cobblers.

  12. borlocks only more borlocks mixed with a load of borlocks

  13. who needs to play catch up? those who are miles behind. i.e. mrs featherstone and mrs may, to mention but a few…

  14. Putting together what Ms. Featherstone and Ms. May have said, I think the current government has an agenda to push the separate but (sort of) equal CP strategy on as much of the EU as possible. They want to further institutionalize the second class status of SS couples. And why? To appease the RC and the CoE.

  15. “She added this would include anti-gay campaigners and said: ‘It’s really got to come from other people, then we’ll see where we are.'”

    What a load of cr*p. Why consult bigots? I think I can guess their answer. Why not ask the KKK to take part in discussions about interracial marriage? Why not ban divorcees from getting married in a civil marriage? After all, many religious groups don’t agree with divorce do they, so it’s only right that we let them interfere in CIVIL law and stop all those bad divorcees from re-marrying.

    No, wait – I forgot. It’s only LGBT people who we’re allowed to treat as unequal *rolls eyes*

  16. My rights should not be subject to debate.

    The catholic church or muslim religion or jewish religion or sikh religion should have absolutely no influence on whether I am allowed to enter the legal contract of civil marriage on the same basis as an opposite sex couple. As a law abiding, tax paying citizen their approval or support should be entirely unnecessary.

    Secondly – where was that vile homophobe Theresa May during the Pride celebrations?

    When I call Theresa May a ‘vile homophobe’ I am speaking solely about her past voting record on LGBT issues which remains APPALLING! And the fact that since assuming her new role she has done NOTHING to improve the lives of LGBT people, then all we can go on for certain about Theresa May is her voting record.

    I think May should be relieved of the equality brief. She’s the Home Secretary – she should focus on that. She has no business being in charge of people whose rights she has voted against time and time and time again.

    And Ms Featherstone needs to realise that unless there is specific action taken on the LibDem pre-election pledge to support marriage equality then the LibDems will be held just as accountable as the Tories are.

  17. Is there a list of people who have come out saying they are pushing/supporting gay marriage, I’ve read Nigg Clegg said the lib dem are pushing for it, now Boris and also Margot , the greens, Thatchell but is there anybody else… why hasn’t the lab party and stonewall jumped on the campaign, aren’t they suppsoed to be the great hopes for gay equality?

  18. Tim Hopkins 5 Jul 2010, 10:14am

    I suspect that when Lynne Featherstone says it has to come from the people, she means more LGBT people! Someone wrote here recently that there were only about 30 people at a London conference on same-sex marriage earlier this year.

    There is a significant campaign going on in Scotland for equal marriage, led by a number of LGBT organisations, but (although judging from comments here, a lot of people in the rest of the UK support equal marriage) the view from here in Scotland is that there seems to be less happening south of the border at the moment.

    For technical reasons related to the powers of the Scottish Parliament, it would be easier for us to get equal marriage in Scotland if the UK Govt was under a lot of pressure to deliver this too, and the Equality Network would be ready to support campaigning on this in other parts of the UK in any way that would be useful!

  19. Tim Hopkins 5 Jul 2010, 10:20am

    By the way, three members of parliament who support equal marriage spoke at Pride Scotia in Edinburgh last weekend. Shirley-Anne Somerville, SNP MSP for Lothian, has been supporting the equal marriage campaign at the Scottish Parliament’s Public Petitions Committee for over a year.

    Patrick Harvie, Green MSP for Glasgow, and co-convener of the Scottish Green Party, also spoke. And Ian Murray, the newly elected Labour MP for Edinburgh South also spoke out in favour of equal marriage.

  20. I fear that Tim Hopkins is right. The English [part of Stonewall, and for all I know the Scottish part too, is totally uninterested in marriage equality – having taken the very last decade view that “separate but equal” (after all Rosa Parks’ bus got her to the same place at the same time as the whites at the front, didn’t it?) is all that we need. My husband (sorry: “civil partner”) and I feel let down by Stonewall.

  21. I think people are beginning to wake up to the fact that Stonewall are a homophobic organisation. For this reason the marriage equality movement is only going to grow.

    It has been too easy to trust Stonewall as in the past they have achieved many things. But their homophobic opposition to marriage equality is delegitimising them enormously.

    The fact that Boris Johnson is now more gay-friendly than Stonewall is a truly damning indictment of Stonewall.

  22. the telegraph reminds us

    “During the election campaign, the Conservatives were the only main party to suggest that they would consider allowing full homosexual marriage, a move that although contentious would be easier to legislate for than altering existing laws on civil partnership and civil marriage.

    Their Contract for Equalities stated: “We will consider the case for changing the law to allow civil partnerships to be called and classified as marriage.”

    Does anybody know what the logic is behind the statement easier to legislate?

    I totally agree about Stonewall? By the way I had no support from them when trying to get any rights in France as a CP, they were totally crap on this as well strict ship

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