Government Junior Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone is expected to announce this week a vital change to the laws regarding same-sex marriages.
It is anticipated that ministers will make changes that will allow same-sex couples to marry in church, as well as other major alterations that will result in the end of major legal discrimination against those of the LGBT community in the UK.
Currently there exist a number of major discrepancies between the legal rights enabled by “traditional” same-sex marriages and civil partnerships. In addition to some insurance and pension rights, a married transgendered person must currently divorce their partner prior to being recognised in their new gender; religious elements are forbidden from a civil ceremony and it is not recognised as the same status as marriage abroad.
Should the new marriage law be implemented, these differences would no longer be applicable. With regards to religious elements, The Quakers and Liberal Judaism have already stated that they wish to hold same-sex ceremonies. Politically, the Liberal Democrats and Labour are behind the movement, and the Conservative party have previously spoken of their willingness to “consider” full gay marriage.
A report from Whitehall said: “This is not just about gay rights but about religious freedom. Quakers and liberal Judaism want to do this. Attitudes have changed to gay marriage. We are going to look at what legislative steps we could begin to make gay marriage possible.”