On 21 October 2016. I presented my 10 Minute Rule Bill, which garnered widespread cross-bench support, to extend Civil Partnerships to opposite-sex couples, thereby correcting the glaring inequality in the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013.
My Bill has two main rationale behind its introduction:
1) The Bill will correct the unintended but glaring inequality whereby same-sex couples are entitled to a civil partnership, but opposite-sex couples are not, instead they only have the option of a conventional marriage. This is a clear inequality in what was billed as an Act to promote equality.
2) We know that marriage works, but we also know that civil partnerships are beginning to show evidence of greater stability for same-sex couples, including those who have children, be it through adoption or surrogacy. There is a strong case for believing that extending civil partnerships would improve that stability for many more families in different ways. The Bill will offer the prospect of yet greater security, greater stability, less likelihood of family breakdown, better social outcomes and better financial outcomes.
I hope you will agree with me that on both counts this would surely constitute progress.
You can read my full speech here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmhansrd/cm151021/debtext/151021-0001.htm#15102145002008