International Media Report On Bill Passing

December 15, 2017 | 53 Comments

A number of overseas media have reported on Bermuda’s legislation to replace same sex marriages with domestic partnerships, with outlets reporting on the situation including the BBC, Washington Post, Fox News, ITV, ABC News, New York Times, NZ Herald, Telegraph, Pink News, Daily Mail, Guardian, Hindustan Times, Daily Beast, Cayman News Service, Belfast Telegraph, NBC, France 24, Newsweek and more.

articles overseas Bermuda Dec 15 2017 (2)

Domestic Partnership Act Passes In House & Senate

The Domestic Partnerships Act passed in the House of Assembly on Friday night, and then passed in the Senate yesterday by a vote of 8 – 3, with the five Government and three Independent Senators voting for it.

Same sex marriage became legal in Bermuda following a Supreme Court decision in May 2017, when the court ruled that “common law discriminates against same-sex couples by excluding them from marriage.”

However this Bill will change the legal status, with the Domestic Partnerships Act [PDF] designed to replace same-sex marriages with a domestic partnership which can be entered into by both same-sex and heterosexual couples.

Having been approved in both the House [24-10] and Senate [8-3], the Bill now heads to the UK-appointed Governor for assent, which is normal procedure for Bills.

International Media Reports

The UK’s ITV reported, “Bermuda’s Senate has voted to repeal same-sex marriage. The British island territory will allow only domestic partnerships after senators approved the Domestic Partnership Act by an 8-3 vote on Wednesday. The House Assembly had already approved the legislation by a 24-10 vote last week. The bill will now be signed into law by the governor.”

The BBC reported, “Gay marriage is being banned in Bermuda, just six months after it was brought in. Officials in the British Overseas Territory voted on Wednesday to overturn the law. Their decision has had a mixed reaction on the island, with one shadow minister calling it “shameful.”

The Washington Post reported, “The Senate in Bermuda gave final legislative approval Wednesday to a measure that would end same-sex marriage in the British island territory and allow only domestic partnerships. Senators approved the Domestic Partnership Act by an 8-3 vote. The House of Assembly approved it 24-10 on Friday. It must now be signed by the governor before it becomes law in the Atlantic ocean territory.”

Fox News reported, “Supporters of the domestic partnership law say it codifies the rights of same-sex couples as essentially the same as traditional marriages. The law does not invalidate about a half dozen same-sex marriages that have occurred since the court ruling. Opponents argue the law discriminates against same-sex couples by allowing only domestic partnerships.”

ABC News reported, “Opponents of the legislation said that it would be unprecedented to strip the right to same-sex marriage after it had been granted in a jurisdiction and that global reaction could hurt the tourism industry. They said it is discriminatory because same-sex couples would have only the option of domestic partnerships while opposite-sex couples could choose between marriage or a domestic partnership.”

The Telegraph reported, “Rights groups expressed outrage over the bill, with some blaming the church groups. “This is a national embarrassment, turning Bermuda — who bills itself as a 21st century place to do business — into a theocracy,” said Jordan Sousa of the island’s Gay Straight Alliance.”

Newsweek reported, “Back in May, Bermuda’s Supreme Court ruled that a ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional, stating ‘the common law discriminates against same-sex couples by excluding them from marriage.’However, the new ruling on domestic partnerships was pushed by the conservative ruling Progressive Labor Party, which took power in July. Many in the LGBT community in Bermuda have derided the decision, slamming the move as “backward” and “patronizing.”

Pink News reported, “The British monarchy is in an unfortunate bind in Bermuda – where the Queen’s assent might have to be given to a law banning same-sex marriage. Same-sex weddings were allowed to begin in Bermuda earlier this year after a court ruling, but the political establishment in the country has conspired to stamp out the practise.”

The New York Times reported, “The Senate in the wealthy, self-governing British territory voted 8 to 3 in favor of a new law to allow only domestic partnerships for same-sex couples. The vote represented a rare reversal of an international trend broadening the number of jurisdictions that recognize same-sex marriage.

“The development in Bermuda recalled a comparable sequence of events in California in November 2008, when the State Constitution was amended to define marriage as between a man and a woman, ending five months of legalized same-sex marriage and reversing a ruling by the State Supreme Court in June of that year. That law, known as Proposition 8, was later overturned in the courts. In June 2015, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage.”

The Cayman News Service reported, “Bermuda’s Progressive Labour Party took a step back this week on marriage equality after the Senate passed a bill to ban same-sex marriage, six months after it was legalised, and replace it with domestic partnerships. Legislators said the change gave the LGBT community the benefits it has been asking for while retaining the traditional definition of marriage.

“However, on this issue Bermuda is still streets ahead of Cayman, which has no legislative protections at all for same-sex couples who want to marry or have a civil partnership.”

India’s Hindustan Times reported, “Senators in socially conservative Bermuda on Wednesday voted to restore a ban on gay marriage, overturning a right granted by its top court earlier this year.”

The UK’s Daily Mail reported, “Bermuda’s senate has voted to tear up a ruling that legalised gay marriage just six months ago. The British island territory is on course to now allow only domestic partnerships. Senators approved the Domestic Partnership Act by an 8-3 vote yesterday after the House of Assembly had approved it 24-10 on Friday. It must now be signed by the governor before it becomes law in the Atlantic ocean territory.”

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  1. Double S says:

    OBA gets Bermuda in the international spotlight because of the America’s Cup.

    PLP gets Bermuda in the international spotlight because they rescind rights of a minority group.

    Well done.

  2. voltage says:

    Unfortunately, the warnings from so many members of our inclusive and diverse community; Human Rights Commission; Centre for Justice; Rainbow Alliance; OUTBermuda and BTA CEO Mr. Dallas were ignored by our local politicians and as a result the world knows the following about Bermuda:

    When our Bermuda Supreme Court goes high, our Progressive Labour Party politicians go low.

    Quo Fata Ferunt

    • Wont stop straight people from coming and they are majority.

      • Infidelguy says:

        It won’t stop some straight people from coming here but this will have an impact on our tourism to be sure.

        • Trufth says:

          Wrong. It WILL stop some straight people from coming to Bermuda as a matter of principal. Many of us straight dudes have family and friends who are gay and support them. If Bermuda isn’t gay-friendly, then we will simply choose a different holiday spot to spend our money.

          Replace the word “gay” with “black / white / female…” Given the choice of where to spend your money, would you choose to spend it somewhere that isn’t friendly to “black / white / female…” people? No, not when there are so many other places to chose from.

    • mixitup says:

      So tell me then, what Island destination should these boycotters travel too? Probably none then.

  3. Sure says:

    Surely the international media only picked it up because certain local Bermudians were quick to give us a bad rep overseas when they couldn’t get what they want. Otherwise there is no way the international press would care about anything that goes on in Bermuda beyond tax evasion.

    • therock says:

      “Surely the international media only picked it up because certain local Bermudians were quick to give us a bad rep overseas when they couldn’t get what they want. ”

      LOL, spoken like a true, selfish, angry bigot.

    • PBanks says:

      What? This is a first for any country and you’re making it out to be some kind of agenda by locals? Talk about your proverbial shooting the messenger.

    • Mr Sparkle says:

      That’s the dumbest statement I have read all week

    • LMAO says:

      You must live underneath this rock to think the international media only picked this story up due to “certain local Bermudians being quick to give us a bad rep overseas when they couldn’t get what they want” ANY country who legalizes same-sex marriage gets a huge amount of positive coverage so WHY wouldn’t these news anchors want to cover such a disgrace when all of the worlds is moving forward???? At least the countries that haven’t legalized it don’t move forward only to change their minds months later!

    • Zevon says:

      The Bermdians giving us a bad rep overseas are the dummies running the place

      • Infidelguy says:

        EXACTLY!!!

        • mixitup says:

          You would love to believe that wouldn’t you Zevon (fake name). You simply hate this Gov’t for your own reasons and probably could care less about anyones rights..The real dummies are the ones who had zero direction on this issue and that was your beloved defunct OBA.

          • bdaboy says:

            ” Zevon (fake name)”

            You momma named you ‘mixitup’?

            “The real dummies are the ones”….who blindly follow the bigoted plp.

    • Real Deal says:

      You are correct they this they can bully Bermuda like they do other places

    • There is no island more homophobic then Jamaica and their tourist industry is doing fine.
      LMAO

      • Trufth says:

        Comparing us to Jamaica? Wow, you have set the bar pretty low, haven’t you?

        • mixitup says:

          Jamaica pulls far more visitors to their Island than we could ever dream of… There is much we can learn from them.

          • steve says:

            how to treat the gay community is not one of them.

          • Double S says:

            Jamaica has an unemployment rate of near 15%. One Jamaican dollar is worth less than one cent USD. Jamaica’s poverty rate is horrendous ans is the second poorest nation in the Caribbean. Tourists are told to go beyond certain points at their own risk.

            Only PLPers would say Bermuda should learn from Jamaican’s example.

            Progressive? Nah, more like regressive.

          • nerema says:

            Of course. We pretend we are in the Caribbean when it suits us, and we are quickly working our way towards an economy very similar to Jamaica.

    • Saltine says:

      “certain local Bermudians” didn’t do anything. You all achieved the bad rep all on your lonesome. How do you expect people to act when they are willfully discriminated against and disrespected. Life happens outside your little bubble.

  4. wahoo says:

    Wow plp way to go! The whole world is talking about us. This is free advertising as only the plp can do. Forget about whether Mr. Dallas was right or wrong we have a lot more to worry about than that.

    Standing strong…..ha! I think you have made everyone’s predictions of doom come true.

  5. i heart 441 says:

    A survey this month by the Pew Research Center found that 26 countries recognize same-sex marriage. The most recent addition was Australia, where Parliament voted this month to legalize the marriages. (If a recent court ruling in Austria takes effect in 2019 as expected, the number would rise to 27.)

    “Worldwide, roughly two-thirds of the countries that allow gay marriage — 17 of 26 — are in Western Europe,” Pew said. “Still, a number of Western European nations, particularly Italy and Switzerland, do not allow same-sex unions. And, so far, no countries in Central and Eastern Europe have legalized gay marriage.”

    South Africa is the only African nation to have made the unions legal, and New Zealand and Australia are the only countries in the Asia-Pacific region to have done so. Pew noted that Taiwan’s highest court ruled in favor of gay unions this year but gave Parliament two years to implement the ruling.

    “Not surprisingly,” it added, “same-sex marriage has advanced mostly in countries and regions where acceptance of homosexuality is high.”

  6. Noncents says:

    Way to go dummies.

  7. i heart 441 says:

    What I just posted is proof that this is not a small island mentality as countries with a population of over 100 million also do not support SSM.

    Whats bizarre is that the majority of countries that due support SSM are ex colonial countries or countries that wiped out the original native populations.

    • Day says:

      You are correct!

      According to Pew research – “Worldwide, roughly two-thirds of the countries that allow gay marriage — 17 of 26 — are in Western Europe,” Pew said. “Still, a number of Western European nations, particularly Italy and Switzerland, do not allow same-sex unions. And, so far, no countries in Central and Eastern Europe have legalized gay marriage.”

      So out of the 195 countries in the world only 26 of them allow for homosexual marriage, and 17 of them are in Western Europe.

      • And South Africa is the only African State that allows it.
        Mmmmmm

      • Family Man says:

        Yeah, probably just a coincidence that those are the very same countries that refugees and migrants from places like Nigeria, Uganda, Iraq, Syria etc are so desperate to get into.

        You don’t see too many refugees trying to get into Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan.

  8. Stand for Truth says:

    All those news outlets are gatekeepers of supremacy therefore those who are students of real history and not (his)story could care less about what they have to say regarding this matter.

    They are no different from the Human Rights Commission right here in Bermuda.

    • Double S says:

      PLPers now attacking the human rights commission.

      The signs are all there people. We are on a very slippery slope.

    • Wahoo juice says:

      Oh I didn’t know about that my faith has been restored. Thank you.

    • PBanks says:

      They’re just reporting on what happened. The truth is that Bermuda didn’t allow it, a judge’s application of the law allowed for it to happen, later a new government pushed for changes in the law that would discontinue it, and here we are.

      It’s not biased for that to be repeated online. Apply the gatekeeper of supremacy label where news is suppressed, not expressed.

  9. Jus' Wonderin' says:

    Thanks PLP…even though I agree with you lot this is terrible coverage for Bermuda worldwide.

  10. Joe Bloggs says:

    It makes me proud to be a Bermudian – NOT!

  11. Spanner breath says:

    Wont be long, china will have the Airport and the rest of Bermuda.

  12. mj says:

    no such thing as same sex marriage! hellar!

  13. Jus' Askin' says:

    “….talk, keep them talking…” :-D

  14. Really says:

    The ones that all stand by their fake churchie beliefs that made this happen will be singing a different tune when the coiffer is bare and civil service is not getting paid. The PLP continues to never give the people that stand behind them the knowledge of where their over bloated salaries come from.

  15. mixitup says:

    I find it hilarious and laughable that people critisize the PLP for taking a step forward on this issue but said nothing when the OBA was stuck in the mud on this same issue.. I also find it funny that the same people who will choose to boycott Bermuda, will fly straight to the Bahamas or Barbodos where their laws are not even close to recognizing any type of same sex union.. What a confused silly world we live in..

    • PBanks says:

      That’s probably going to be the challenge for those who promote Bermuda.

      How can they delicately convey to people upset at these decisions, that Bermuda remains light-years ahead of its Caribbean neighbours when it comes to gay rights (despite the significant rollback)?

  16. bdaboy says:

    “I find it hilarious and laughable that people critisize the PLP for taking a step forward on this issue ”

    I think it’s hilarious and laughable that ‘people like you’ think that removing rights from a segment of the population is actually a step forward. It’s not, it’s a step back and proves that the plp and its followers are nothing but bigots.

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