Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Some Of Us Have Been Waiting For Today For A Very Long Time... But It Isn't Over Yet

I've been arguing, I hesitate to say fighting, for marriage equality for a very long time. Way back in 2005 I was rather distressed at the introduction of civil partnerships, and in 2007 decided that sitting around moaning about it wasn't going to get anywhere so I began writing to MPs and blogging on the various efforts to convince people that marriage equality was something worth fighting for.

We are not there yet. But today was one major milestone in the journey. The Government's Same-Sex Marriage Bill passed through its third reading in the House of Commons by 366 votes to 161. It was weirdly anti-climatic as, despite the House of Commons being our elected part of our legislature, the Bill is only halfway to being law. But it is a chance to take a moment and think how far we've come from the days when people like Ed Miliband seemed a little shocked to even be asked if they supported marriage equality

That is due, in no small part, thanks to hard-working MPs like Lynne Featherstone, Nick Herbert and Julian Huppert. And thanks to campaigns like the Coalition for Equal Marriage. These are the people who put marriage equality on the agenda. And I feel we owe them a great deal of gratitude. 

The Same-Sex Marriage Bill remains deeply flawed, lacking pension rights and transgender rights supporting amendments. And the fight in the Lords is likely to be tough. 

If you can help by writing letters or emails to peers, or even donating some money so more can be posted, then please let me know. We've won this battle, and some!, but the fight for our freedom continues. 

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