Gay marriage set to become law as peers approve Same Sex Couples Bill
Gay marriage is set to be legalised in England and Wales after peers gave the Same Sex Couples Bill an unopposed third reading in the House of Lords.
The Bill now goes back to the Commons for MPs to consider changes made to it in the Upper House. But with debate limited to just those government amendments the Bill is certain to become law.
In an emotional speech, Labour’s Lord Alli, who is gay, thanked peers and declared: “My life and many others will be better today than it was yesterday.”
Ben Summerskill, chief executive of Stonewall, added: “It’s impossible to express how much joy this historic step will bring to tens of thousands of gay people and their families and friends. The Bill’s progress through Parliament shows that, at last, the majority of politicians in both Houses understand the public’s support for equality.”
Lord Lester of Herne Hill, a Liberal Democrat, said it would have been “quite inconceivable” for the Lords to have approved such legislation 20 years ago.
Under the Bill religious organisations are protected from being compelled to conduct gay marriages.
The Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Rev Graham James, said it was “no secret” that the majority of Christian Churches and other faiths “don’t believe same-sex marriage accords with their understanding of marriage”. But he added: “Many of us do welcome the social and legal recognition of same-sex partnerships and believe our society is a better and healthier one for such recognition.”
- 1 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 3 Top Gear: Jodie Kidd, Philip Glenister and Guy Martin 'in advanced talks' to join show
- 4 Frankie Boyle on Scottish independence: 'In the Interests of Unity, F**k Off'
- 5 How to gain confidence and maximise your sexual potential
Boston Marathon runner's search for mystery man she kissed ends with letter from his wife
Frankie Boyle on Scottish independence: 'In the Interests of Unity, F**k Off'
Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
Mysterious 'X-Files' sounds heard miles above the Earth
Met Gala 2015: Beyoncé manages to out-skimp Rihanna, Miley and Kim Kardashian combined with near-naked ensemble
In defence of liberal democracy
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
Andy McSmith's Sketch: Feisty audience is the real star of an enlightening show
£13676.46 - £16411.61 per annum + OTE: SThree: SThree Trainee Recruitment Cons...
£18000 - £22000 per annum + training: Ashdown Group: Business and Marketing Gr...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...
£20000 - £22000 per annum + excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...