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Who Needs Research For a Law Change?

The Government has done no research on the effects of the proposed de facto law changes, said ACT Justice spokesman Stephen Franks.

The Justice and Electoral Select committee asked the Ministry of Justice whether work had been done on what the proposed law might actually do to the stability of de facto relationships, the answer was ‘none’.

People are not the dumb subjects this patronising Government sees. “If it becomes law that you must halve your property or become liable to support someone if you are in a relationship for more than three years, people change to protect themselves. The law could create more and earlier bust-ups. That would hurt the children and vulnerable partners that it is meant to help.

“Nor has the government bothered to survey de facto and same sex couples. They should have been asked whether they want to be deemed ‘married’. In effect Helen Clark and Margaret Wilson are putting them through the Registry Office without any chance to say no.”

Our traditional marriage ceremony painfully developed safeguards to protect unwilling parties from marriage without duress. This Government obviously now regards consent as immaterial. Forced marriage is okay when the socialist state says marry. Has Margaret Wilson thought of taking the Rev Moon from Korea as a consultant?

Sound law can assist parties involved in same sex or de facto relationships to know what they can expect from each other, and to simplify the rules that govern what they owe to children or to or from the state.

“ACT will support legislation that enables couples to opt into agreements that cover these matters, but this must be based on choice, not on Government decree.

“Any legislation that further damages marriage and makes it easier for the Government to force all relationships into the same regulations will not be supported by ACT.

“When couples have children, the interests of the children may justify compulsory support obligations, but otherwise the State has no right to decree couples married,” said Stephen Franks.

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