A law passed today in Jersey allows gay and heterosexual couples to hold civil partnership ceremonies in churches if the religious organisation consents it.
An amendment giving parties the choice to ‘opt in’ was added earlier in the month and was succeeded by 30-6 votes.
Despite the new legislation the Church of England still refuses to allow civil partnerships in its buildings.
Openly Gay Philip Ozouf, deputy chief minister of Jersey, commented to BBC News ““The island’s parliament has sent a strong message of Jersey being an open, accepting and tolerant society.”
“It is not the same as marriage but it is an absolute equivalent to marriage” he added.
The island is a crown dependency and all decisions made by the government have to be approved by the privy council. This could take up to six months but hopefully ceremonies will commence by the end of the year.