October 22, 2018
Today (22 October), Tim Loughton, MP, announced an amendment to his own Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration) Bill which has its Report stage of its passage through the Commons on Friday, 26 October.
In effect, the amendment states that the Government will make regulations to bring about equality of civil partnerships and that this must take place within six months of the Bill being passed. This means that his Bill – if passed through Parliament – will lead to mixed-sex couples being able to have a civil partnership before the end of 2019.
This comes less than a month after Prime Minister Theresa May announced that the Government supported opening up CPs to all, but she gave no time frame.
I know that many supporters of equal civil partnerships would like the law changed sooner (as I do). But the realities of Parliamentary procedure, aligning various ministries and the distractions of Brexit, mean that putting a six-month cap on it after the Bill becomes law (hopefully in Spring 2019) is the most pragmatic way to avoid any wriggling out with excuses about “consultations and procedure”.
If he can steer his amendment and Bill through, Tim should be congratulated for being the one to hold the Government to a definite time frame for its own pronouncements.
We want to encourage all our supporters to keep up the fight. Please send a postcard, email (you can find your MP’s email on www.writetothem.com),tweet your MP (adding handle @EqualCPs and hashtag #equalcivilpartnerships) or telephone them at their office to tell them you want them to attend the debate on Friday morning and to support this amendment.
Many thanks Tim Loughton and good luck from us all at the Campaign!
Chair, Equal Civil Partnerships Campaign