Canadian court clears way for gay marriages
Friday 10 December 2004
Canada's Supreme Court ruled yesterday that proposed legislation allowing gay marriage is constitutional but the government cannot force religious officials to perform ceremonies against their beliefs.
The government had sought the Toronto court's opinion, which is only advisory. Judges in six provinces and one territory have already allowed same-sex marriage. Canada would join Belgium and the Netherlands in allowing gay marriage if the law is passed.
"Several centuries ago, it would have been understood that marriage be available only to opposite-sex couples," the court said in its opinion. "The recognition of same-sex marriage in several Canadian jurisdictions as well as two European countries belies the assertion that the same is true today."
The legislation is expected to be introduced early next year. The federal Conservatives and even some Liberals are expected to wage a battle to limit marriage to heterosexuals.
The gay marriage law needs the backing of at least 155 legislators in the 308-seat House of Commons to pass. It has the backing of the 38 Liberal cabinet members and is believed to be supported by nearly all legislators in the Bloc Quebecois and New Democrat parties, which have 54 and 19 seats.
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 3 The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
- 4 Why you're almost certainly more like your father than your mother
- 5 Westboro Baptist Church couldn't picket Leonard Nimoy's funeral because they didn't know where it was
Mark Zuckerberg: Facebook CEO's one simple test for who to hire
Bali nine: Welcome to 'Execution Island' – the Indonesian holiday resort where foreigners are sent to die
'A girl is more responsible for rape than a boy': The statement that shocked the world... except India
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
Saudi Arabia executions now at 'unprecedented rate' after kingdom kills four more in two days
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Nigel Farage promises Ukip will not 'stigmatise' would-be migrants – and says he wants 'everyone to speak the same language'
Ex-head of MI6: 'We shouldn't kid ourselves that Russia is on a path to democracy'
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are an award-winning digit...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform En...
£10000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...
£17000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...