Lynne Featherstone MP has today expressed great happiness as the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill is set to receive its second reading in Parliament.
The Liberal Democrat MP has been at the forefront of the process to secure equal marriage since it was first confirmed as Liberal Democrat policy in 2010, having brought the policy to the Home Office and initiated the Government consultation process in March 2012, in her former role as Equalities Minister.
The MP for Hornsey and Wood Green has been awarded ‘Politician of the Year’ for her efforts by Attitude Magazine in October 2012.
The Bill has cross party support and is widely expected to be voted through to its next parliamentary stage by MPs later this evening. Polls also show a majority of people to be in favour of the legislation.
The Bill will enable same sex couples in England and Wales to marry in both civil ceremonies, and religious ceremonies where a religious institution has formally consented to undertake it. The Bill will also allow existing civil partnerships to be converted into marriages, if the couple so wishes.
Lynne Featherstone MP said:
“I am absolutely ecstatic that we are now set to realise this historic reform, towards which I have worked passionately for many years.
“Marriage is fundamentally about expressing love and commitment, and as a Government I believe it is our duty to help everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, to realise that expression.
“Equal marriage is an established Liberal Democrat policy, and I am exceptionally proud to have helped implement it as a Liberal Democrat Minister.”
On awarding Lynne Featherstone MP ‘Politician of the Year’ in 2012, Attitude Magazine said:
“Lynne Featherstone has been the face of the coalition’s pledge to introduce equal marriage reforms.
“The MP for Hornsey and Wood Green has been vociferous in her support for the LGBT community, and the government’s promise to deliver same-sex civil marriage rights.”
Adrian Trett, chair of LGBT+ Liberal Democrats, said:
“I hope Tuesday will be a watershed day for equality, where a process will start which will end in the recognition of all loving marriages being equal whatever the genders of the couple. This will be an immense step forward for the journey of inclusion and equality.”