Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Churches & Celebrants Not Protected By Marriage Bill


MEDIA RELEASE
27 February 2013

Churches & Celebrants Not Protected By Marriage Bill

Family First NZ says that the proposed Select Committee amendments to the same-sex marriage Bill will not protect places of faith from having to host ‘same-sex weddings’ if their facilities are available to the general public, and marriage celebrants who are not part of approved mainline churches or approved organisations will not be lawfully able to refuse a request to marry a same-sex couple by reason of the same-sex of the couple.

The Select Committee acknowledges in its own report (pg4) that the proposed exemption will only apply to 1/3’rd of all marriages (22,000 p.a.) conducted in New Zealand as only 32% of marriages are conducted by a church or organisational marriage celebrant. The balance of 68% (15,000) are conducted in a registry office by a registrar or an independent marriage celebrant.

“This amendment is totally different to what Labour MP Louisa Wall promised when she introduced the Bill to Parliament,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “She said ‘…What my Bill does not do is require any person or Church to carry out a marriage if it does not fit with the beliefs of the celebrant or the religious interpretation a church has.’ The proposed Select Committee amendment contains no protection for an independent marriage celebrant or registrar, and the personal conviction or beliefs of celebrants from approved organisations will not be protected unless the organisation holds the same view.”

“This Bill will provide a culture of coercion whereby celebrants or registrars that don’t fall within the exemptions will not be lawfully able to refuse to perform a same-sex marriage by reason of the same-sex of the couple. This proposed Select Committee amendment undercuts Louisa Wall’s assurances to Parliament, and provides a much narrower exemption than that provided by the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act which states that everybody has the right of freedom of religion and belief, and the right to manifest that belief or view.”

Churches, synagogues and mosques will also be caught.

“An earlier legal opinion Family First received said that ‘churches supplying services to the public will be in breach of the Human Rights Act 1993, if they refuse to supply services to a couple seeking to be married, by reason of the same sex of the couple’. Louisa Wall argues that churches already face this issue – but she is incorrect.”

“Churches do not already have to host ‘same sex weddings’ in their churches, because there is no such thing yet as a ‘same sex wedding’. That issue will only arise if the bill is passed. A ‘same sex wedding’ in a church, mosque or tabernacle would signify acceptance of the ‘marriage’. That would be entirely new and would certainly not be business as usual for churches. It would seriously prejudice the religious freedoms of churches and ministers,” says Mr McCoskrie.

“Despite all the hype and sales pitch, this bill has failed to deliver what was promised, and politicians should vote against the Bill.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Covid-19, 21/9: 1,108 Overall Cases, 4,800,000+ Vaccine Doses


23 new cases have been discovered in Auckland, which has moved to Level 3 as of Tuesday night. 818 of the Auckland cases have recovered alongside all of the Wellington cases... More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On Canada’s Election, And The AUKUS Defence Pact


Yesterday, Canada held an election in which everyone lost, including the voters. After holding its most expensive ( $C600 million) election campaign ever, the result was Groundhog Day, with the five main parties getting almost exactly the same number of seats as they did last time around, in 2019. Same overall result too: Liberals leader and PM Justin Trudeau will once again be leading a minority government... More>>



 
 

Green Party: Kiwis Overseas Must Be Allowed To Vote Next Year
New Zealanders stranded overseas should be allowed to vote in next year’s local government elections and the 2023 general election, the Green Party said today. “The reality of this pandemic is lots of people cannot renew their voting rights when they are home as they normally would... More>>



Government: Keeping our Police safe to keep our communities safe

The Government is committed to keeping our frontline police officers safe, so they in turn can keep New Zealanders safe – with one of the largest investments in frontline safety announced by Police Minister Poto Williams at the Police College today... More>>

ALSO:



Government: Counter-Terrorism Bill Returns To Parliament

The Counter-Terrorism Legislation Bill has returned to Parliament for its second reading in an important step towards giving enforcement agencies greater power to protect New Zealanders from terrorist activity... More>>


Power: Bill Changes Bring Fairness To Charges

A key recommendation of an independent panel to make electricity charges fairer across all households will be put in place, the Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods has announced... More>>



Government: Parks expiry of licenses, WoFs and regos
As a result of the Delta outbreak, driver licences, Warrants of Fitness (WoFs), Certificates of Fitness (CoFs), vehicle licences (‘regos’) and licence endorsements that expired on or after 21 July 2021 will be valid until 30 November 2021, Transport Minister Michael Wood has announced today... More>>



Child Poverty Action Group: Highest jump in weekly benefit numbers since first lockdown

The current lockdown has triggered the largest weekly increase in benefit recipient numbers since the first lockdown last year, and Child Poverty Action Group is concerned the Government isn't doing enough to assist affected families... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels