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Same-Sex Marriage Working Group progresses new legislation

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Following the successful approval of the Same-Sex Marriage Policy Letter in December 2015, a working group has been established to ensure swift progress is made to putting in place all the necessary elements to enable same-sex marriages in Guernsey.

The working group, which consists of the Chief Minister Jonathan Le Tocq and Deputies Elis Bebb and Chris Green, met for the first time last week and have directed work, on the first draft of the new law.

In addition to the legislation, the group is also taking the opportunity to look into other matters relating to marriage.  These include ensuring that gender recognition is appropriately dealt with in the future and simplifying the procedures relating to marriage; this will include assessing the merits of lengthening the notice period but shortening the residency period required, as well as widening out the opportunities to conduct weddings in locations such as outdoors, in hotels and in private homes.

Chairman of the Working Group Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq said:

"The recent States decision enables us to look at the general arrangements and procedures for civil marriage and to bring about positive changes that meets the modern expectations of our community".

Vice-Chairman Deputy Elis Bebb said:

"I am delighted that the States agreed the same-sex marriage proposals in December.  However, it is now important that we do not stand still on this matter and that we implement the necessary legislation as soon as possible."

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