Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.

UK: Equality commission says Christian registrars cannot opt out of marrying gay couples

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. No. They cannot. Anymore than they can opt out of performing a civil ceremony in their professional role for any other demographic group they don’t approve of – Since Biblical endorsement for personal bias is so easy to construct and has been done for anti-semitism, racism, homophobia and against other faiths.

    It’s common bloody sense that they cannot do this, as they are not hired for their religious beliefs, but to perform a service.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 15 Feb 2013, 1:48pm

      Quite right. Imagine if we told our employers we refuse to do something as part of our job description because we don’t agree with something. We’d be shown the door. Most of us are required to do things we don’t like in a place of work, so why shouldn’t they? I’m sick and tired of this special protection crap for religious bigots. It’s making the case for disestablishment of religion that much more relevant and necessary.

      1. Yes, indeed. And a further thing. If the Bill specifically and legally permits teachers not to speak as positively of marriage between same-sex pairs as between different-sex pairs, THAT will be a reincarnation of 1989′s “Section 28″ which literally produced a climate of FEAR in every school in the UK, in which teachers could not dare to say a single positive thing about homosexuality for fear of some kid telling his mum and dad and that mum and dad ringing the red-top papers to pillory the teacher on the front pages as having broken the law.

        We have to insist that teachers cannot have this opt out. I realise that that is going to cause mayhem in the progress of the Bill, but the alternative is adult gays being able to marry but young gays in school being deprived of any kind of positive affirmation, which in effect means the green light for homophobic bullying in our schools.

  2. And rightly so – just as a Catholic registrar cannot refuse to marry a previously-divorced people.

    Civil marriage has nothing, nothing to do with religious beliefs.

  3. Robert in S. Kensington 15 Feb 2013, 1:44pm

    I can just hear the hysterics coming from the religious nutters over this one. This bill bends over backwards and beyond to accommodate these bigots, yet they’re never satisfied. In my view, if they marry divorced heteros some of whom were or are adulterers, a direct conflict with right wing religious beliefs, they should be compelled to marry gay couples.

    1. I would so love to know if that bloody stupid Ladele woman ever refused, for example, to marry a couple from a Muslim or Hindu background, on the basis that her toxic brand of religion doesn’t recognise other faiths; or a couple where one was Christian and the other not. Somehow I don’t think so.

      1. I don’t think so either. I’m sure she was happy to marry divorcees and atheists too. Her ‘reason’ for refusing to perform CPs was demonstrably rubbish as she appeared to have picked when to turn her ‘strongly-held religious beliefs’ on and off as it suited her.

  4. GulliverUK 15 Feb 2013, 1:56pm

    Religion is banned from playing any part whatsoever in Civil Marriage ceremonies, it’s illegal to even have a hymn apparently. And if you are a devout Christian you certainly won’t believe Civil Marriage is right, but that only Church weddings have any meanings.

    Besides, Ladele and her ilk lost big time, they strengthened anti-discrimination law, not weakened it as they had intended, So thanks Ladele and wingnuts everywhere :)

    Now, just imagine if some practising dick at the HRMC said they could not process our Self-Assessment forms because it said we were in a Civil Partnership – because some religious nutter would, and the Christian Institute would probably fund them all the way.

    1. Funnily enough I do work in HMRC. Perhaps I should start asking for peoples relgious beliefs before I asist them and cut them off depending on their answer. Im sure the CI/C4M and their ilk would have no problem with this would they?

      1. GulliverUK 15 Feb 2013, 3:54pm

        Kris, everybody has to work somewhere. I’m a contractor and you would not believe where I work right now – I couldn’t even say the name without biting off my own tongue !

        1. Hee, hee, oh, go on! Spill the beans! You’re down in Canterbury, fitting out the palace in the grounds of the Cathedral for the new Archbigot! Correct? :-)

          (Can you fit some kind of very frightening device beneath his nibs’s toilet and link it up to a sensor?)

  5. Absolutely disgraceful infringement of religious freedom! Next we’ll be told that Christian doctors in a hospital casualty ward can’t get out of treating gay people, or that Christian police have to protect gay people, or that Christian fire fighters have to put out a blaze in a gay person’s house or business. Where will it all end?

    1. With equality for all.

    2. I remember doing some temp work at an Amazon warehouse, just collecting customer orders and putting them in boxes to be sent off, and I was confronted by various customer orders that were ‘morally questionable’, like condoms, as well as adult DVDs and erotic literature, both straight and gay.
      Now that I think about it, it would have been a right laugh if I’d refused to do my job with regard to these items, citing religious beliefs.

  6. If your religious belief hinders your job, start job hunting. Most people have to do things in their work they don’t particularly like. Be it for religious or other reasons.

  7. Thy should be able to opt out.

    1. Really? And how about interracial couples – should they be able to opt out of marrying them too? Or maybe atheists? Or Muslims? Why are you so desperate to have the right to discriminate, Matthew? If you stopped beating yourself up about being gay and were happier in yourself you’d feel less need to be so stridently homophobic.

    2. Matthew, that’s an interesting statement. Now, please, give us your reasons. Let’s hear them.

  8. Good. They shouldn’t opt out any more than a teacher can opt out of teaching children from certain races or religions. It’s a disgusting idea.

    The CI are too dense to realise that the legislation protects *them* too.

  9. Common sense 15 Feb 2013, 2:34pm

    Can’t help feeling this is a mistake. While my gut says prosecute the arses off these freaks, my common sense tells me there is little to be gained from making pointless martyrs to gay marriage.

    1. But they are martyrs only to that small group of similar minded people. The rest of the population sees them for what they are – fools.

    2. David Jordan 15 Feb 2013, 3:10pm

      They aren’t martyrs, they’re people who are refusing to preform the duties of their job, its like joining the army, then calming you’re a pacifist and then complaining when you’re discharged.
      Why should the UK taxpayer have to pay the same wages to two people while one of them refuses to do the same work as the other.

  10. If they don’t want to marry gay people, they can just quit their jobs. Nobody forces them to work there.

    I can’t believe this people. They want money from the state and expect they can break his rules and discriminate just because they want to.

    1. “…its rules ….”

      forgive in german the state is masculine

      1. Indeed! Imagine if nurses in hospitals declared, “Oh, I’m not looking after the woman in Bed 3! She’s from Munich. I don’t do people from Munich. Berlin, yes. Munich, no. Sorry. Tough.”

        She would argue she has sincere and deeply-held beliefs.

  11. I am glad the EHRC said that existing opt-outs for registrars in some councils could be retained “for a time-limited period”, or else they will take action.

    1. And “it warned that this would only be a “transitional” arrangement applying to existing registrars and not those who were employed in the future.”

      But why on earth should registry office assistants be allowed to refuse to marry homosexual couples for as long the assistants remain in their positions? Some of those assistants may be quite young, like Ladele. One could have bigots remaining in their positions, refusing to marry homosexual couples for several decades before they retired! Meanwhile they would have new colleagues working alongside them who might also wish not to deal with homosexual couples, but those new colleagues would be forced to conduct same-sex marriages. Imagine the strife this would cause. “She doesn’t have to do it, so why should I? I’m off to the ECHR to fight for my RIGHTS!”

      No. Everyone who provides a service to the public, whether it be a public or a private service, must provide it equally, respecting all people.

  12. Jock S. Trap 15 Feb 2013, 3:01pm

    Quite right. If they want to object become a vicar but civil marriage has nothing to do with religion and religion should Not interfere with this either.

    If they don’t wish to perform then find another job. There are plenty I’m sure who are more than willing religious or not, to perform marriage equally.

  13. Cardinal Capone 15 Feb 2013, 3:10pm

    It has nothing to do with whether a registrar is a Christian, since the majority of Christians who are registrars clearly have no problem with CP’ing or marrying gay couples.

    The EHCR should not imply that there is a Christian consensus on this issue; the objectors are a small vocal minority.

  14. That should read “Christian” registrars. See, we can use sarcasm quotes, too.

  15. johnny33308 15 Feb 2013, 4:19pm

    These disgusting KKKristians always complaining of not wishing to interact with LGBT people in their OFFICIAL capacities for which they were hired by The People to perform. They are outrageous in their pitiless whining about having to go against their Personal beliefs in order to do the job they were employed to do. They should just quit and find another more suitable position in order to retain their BIGOTRY….perhaps they could find employment in a theocracy, like in Iran, a place filled with people just like these kkkristians. Let’s wish them well on their voyage…people like this are just cause to disestablish religion or even ban it entirely….they persecute others and scream that they are being persecuted….disgusting hate-filled excuses for humans they are!

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews.co.uk. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.

Top commenters this week

Latest stories

See all