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Humanist weddings and equal marriage pension rights to be debated by peers

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Reader comments

  1. I think the fact that “rights” and “debated” in the same sentence is the most telling thing

  2. Robert (Kettering) 19 Jun 2013, 12:11pm

    The pension issue should be sorted as it’s clearly very unfair that pension companies can discriminate. It needs taking to the European Court of Human Rights if all else fails.

    I’m fortunate to be in receipt of an NHS pension and my partner also works for the NHS. The NHS does not discriminate and if either of us dies (we’re Civil Partnered) then half pension goes to the survivor the same as with straight couples. If the NHS can do it why can’t other providers?

    1. I agree, Maria Miller should hang her head in shame for allowing this iniquity to continue, as well as the then Labour government who instituted it in the first instance. There was no reason for permitting this anomaly, as gay people paid the same into these pension schemes before the civil partnership act was even a thought so the extra funds accrued to pension funds who took advantage of this loop hole to disadvantage their gay members therefore advantaged their overall funds on the back of discrimination against their gay contributors. They now need to use this financial advantage they accrued to address the discrimination.

  3. TBH I don’t know what to make of this.I am a bigger fan of the French/laicist model where the right to marry is solely reserved to the state not some organisations or religions.In that way marriage is what it should be.A contract betwen people in eyes of the state and nothing else

  4. One of the biggest problems in the english marriage law is its registration of premises rather than the authorisation of celebrants and the granting of a “license to marry by a registrar” which can then be solomonised by a registrar (civil marriage) or a registered celebrant- as in the Scottish system. It should be noted the Scottish system at present classes humanism as a religion, this will change with the Scottish marriage bill this month – problems ahead?
    This however already exists in a limited form in the case of england with the arrangements for Quaker marriage.
    The problem is in definition of an ethical system of belief not tied to a deity or supernatural belief, humanism is not the only one.
    The pensions issue is a national disgrace and would also apply to Scotland!!!! MSP’s are aware and are attempting to have it put right before it becomes UK law.

  5. Stephen Mole 19 Jun 2013, 4:52pm

    Inequalities in the provision of survivors’ pensions can only be seen as flagrantly discriminatory and makes a same sex marriage a sub marriage. The ECHR will soon put this right. Here in France ‘married’ is married for all, and all rights and obligations are standard.

  6. Robert in S. Kensington 19 Jun 2013, 5:03pm

    I’m all for Humanist weddings in England and Wales but not at the expense of wrecking this Bill which was attempted by the fabulous Kate Green and Stephen Williams in the Commons third reading. For all practical purposes, get the current Bill on to statute first, then legislate for Humanist weddings after I say as well as CP pension parity.

    1. The problem with pensions is that the government have carried the anomoly from civil partnerships over INTO the EQUAL marriage bill and not only that they have already lost the arguement in court which they are appealing,
      by any measure – discreditable.
      There is No reason why a concise clause cannot be added to the bill to permit humanist marriage or for that matter the other philosophical [none deity and none superstition] belief systems. I do however agree that it would be better for this ammendment not to be made if it was to endanger the present bill. I believe it has already been agreed to be reviewed in the review

  7. George Broadhead 20 Jun 2013, 1:40pm

    As a gay Humanist I think Baroness Thornton is quite right.

    If Humanist (non-religious) weddlng ceremonies are legalised in Scotland, why not in England?

    Incidentally, Humanist ceremonies in Scotland now outstrip Catholic ones.

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