Sydney and Perth same-sex couples where one partner has British citizenship will be able to marry from June 27 in British consulates, with other states to follow suit soon after. The move by Britain’s Foreign Office to export British values opens the doors for its citizens to wed inside consulates located in more than 20 countries where same-sex marriage is not legal but local authorities have given permission for the ceremonies to take place.
Last year the Parliament of the United Kingdom passed same-sex marriage legislation in England and Wales. The first marriages took place in March of this year. Similar legislation was passed by the Scottish Parliament in February.
Our closest neighbour, New Zealand, passed legislation to allow same-sex marriage last year and since then, more than 300 Australian couples have made the journey to marry in New Zealand.
Under current federal law, couples who marry under the British laws will not have their marriages recognised in Australia. British consulates in Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra will be able to hold ceremonies later this year.
Same sex marriages can now take place in the British consulates of Australia, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Japan, Kosovo, Latvia, Mongolia, Montenegro, Nicaragua, Peru, Philippines, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, and Vietnam.
Read more from The Age.
Read more from The Telegraph.
With New Zealand, England, Wales and Scotland all legislating same-sex marriage in the past year, it seems clear that same-sex marriage reform is heading our way. Since 2010, poll numbers have changed significantly on the issue of same-sex marriage, with an eight per cent increase to 65 per cent support from the community.
The issue of same-sex marriage in recent years has moved far-beyond whether it is right or wrong for two men or two women to marry according to religious beliefs, with legislation being passed in most countries to uphold the basic human rights of same-sex couples.
Do you think it’s time for Australia to legislate for same-sex marriage? If you are opposed to same-sex marriage, how would the passing of such a law directly affect you?
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