Marriage Privy Council Hearings This Week In UK

February 1, 2021

The Privy Council hearing in London on Bermuda’s marriage equality decision will take place this week, on Wednesday, February 3 and Thursday, February 4, with the court hearing to be live streamed online.

An OUTBermuda spokesperson said, “This week, leaders and attorneys for OUTBermuda will enter the final appeal in London for Bermuda’s historic marriage equality decision. The arguments will be heard before the United Kingdom’s Privy Council on Wednesday, February 3 and Thursday, February 4, 2021. Following the hearings, Bermudians should know the Council’s final decision within the next months. The forthcoming case is summarized here.

“These historic proceedings will be live streamed on Wednesday, February 3 and Thursday, February 4 from 10.30-13.00 & 14.00-16.00 Greenwich Mean Time [GMT] both days. To observe the proceedings live at those times, you may visit here.

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“OUTBermuda and fellow Bermudian plaintiffs Roderick Ferguson, Maryellen Jackson, Dr Gordon Campbell, the Parlour Tabernacle of the Vision Church of Bermuda and Sylvia Hayward, will be represented during the proceeding by a Bermudian team and led by Lord David Pannick, Queen’s Counsel. Lord Pannick is considered the pre-eminent human rights and constitutional advocate in the United Kingdom, with extensive global experience. See here.”

OUTBermuda Deputy Chair Zakiya Lord said, “With this milestone, we believe marriage equality, at last, is within our grasp for all Bermudians. Since Bermuda’s historic equality case was first decided in 2017 and despite the Government’s misconceived opposition, Bermuda’s same-sex couples have continued to commit to each other and have consecrated their vows under Bermuda law.”

Co-plaintiff Roderick Ferguson, whose lawsuit resulted in the original Supreme Court victory in this matter in 2018, said, “We now stand before the world to ratify the wisdom of Bermuda’s courts and to preserve same-sex marriage rights in Bermuda. We’re grateful that popular support for marriage equality in Bermuda is greater than ever before, and we trust the Privy Council to rule in our favour.”

“Bermuda will be on the world stage this week to advocate for equality under the law for all our families including my own,” said OUTBermuda Chair Adrian Hartnett-Beasley. “We knew our struggle would be long and difficult, but we have never wavered in seeking justice for all Bermudians.”

OUTBermuda added, “The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council [JCPC] is the highest court of appeal for certain British territories, some Commonwealth countries and a few UK bodies. The Judicial Committee consists of senior judges who are Privy Councillors: they are predominantly Justices of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and senior judges from the Commonwealth. This judicial body is often referred to as the Privy Council.

“Bermuda Timeline on Same-Sex Marriage:

  • “Marriage equality for Bermuda’s same-sex couples has been legal since the May 2017 decision in Godwin and DeRoche. Since then, the Bermuda Government sought to remove that right through the Domestic Partnership Act 2018, however both the Supreme Court [6 June 2018] and the Court of Appeal [23 November 2018] found this action to be unconstitutional and marriage equality has been upheld.
  • “Since May 2017, therefore, Bermuda same-sex couples have had their marriages celebrated and recognized in Bermuda and around the world. There is no precise estimate of their number however.
  • “The ongoing legal battle and final hearing on February 3 and 4, 2021 in the Privy Council, however, is necessary to retain this basic human right and make it permanent and lasting for all residents of Bermuda.
  • “OUTBermuda as well as Roderick Ferguson and the other successful plaintiffs also are seeking to enforce the Court of Appeal’s Order against the Government for legal costs incurred. Once the appeals are fully exhausted, it is estimated that the Bermuda Government will incur more than $3 million in covering their own legal expenses as well as the successful plaintiffs [including OUTBermuda].
  • “Human rights advocates and leaders across the British Commonwealth of nations are watching these developments closely. Some legal experts believe this decision will set favorable legal precedent on the marriage rights for same-sex couples in many other jurisdictions within the Commonwealth.”

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Comments (37)

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  1. Boston Whaler Owner says:

    What 2 people do in Private is nobody’s business,but many draw the line when it is blatant in public.

    • Um Um says:

      Agreed, I can’t stand it when a man and a woman walk down the street holding hands. Get a room, breeders!

      • Herbalist says:

        The OBA when Government had the power to give the LGBT community what they desired most and they did nothing. None of their leaders supported SSM and the party is now pathetic circus trying to keep the lights on.

        The PLP stated from the very start as opposition what they were going to do and won 24 seats vs 12 seats in 2016 and in 2020 they increase their lead 30 vs 6!

        • saud says:

          Um Um, thank you for admitting that your PLP government is homophobic…and is on the wrong side of history with this one.

          Can you say Hypocrite?

      • Boston Whaler Owner says:

        @Um Um
        yo mama was a breeder,she bred you,it’s a sad fact she didn’t swallow!

        • totally unnecessary comment says:

          People can have different opinions but we must still have respect for one each others views.

          Your comment was very sad indeed. there are other ways to express your views without resorting to crass replies.

          • sandgrownan says:

            Not sure I agree. I don’t think I can have respect for someone who wants to discriminate against a segment of the community, and is fighting to enshrine it in law.

            I’m sorry, they are scum.

    • Yup yup says:

      My line is set at blatant discrimination in ours laws. Your level of comfort or discomfort is really of no relevance to me.

      • Boston Whaler Owner says:

        your command of English is terrible,go back to school!

        • Mike Hind says:

          You really don’t have a leg to stand on when your denunciation of someone’s English is this badly written.

    • saud says:

      many do, and nothing is done…I’ve seen straight people all up in each other every single day of my life. It’s disgusting.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Being “blatant in public” isn’t illegal and hasn’t been for a very, very long time and is in no way threatened by this, and thus, is irrelevant.

      What we’re talking about here is equal access to rights conveyed by marriage.

  2. sage says:

    “There is no precise estimate of their number however.” The government statistics said 10 in 2017, 6 in 2018, 4 in 2019 and one divorce. Government is guaranteed to lose this case.

  3. Jahmal says:

    Same sex marraige has been legal for three years now Bermuda did not burst into flames lets move on .

    • Toodle-oo says:

      And to think that I wasted all that money on a fire and brimstone resistant roof !

      • lol says:

        You should have recommended the oba purchase some to avoid their 5 musical chairs and 1 jet gate party. :)

        • saud says:

          The OBA isn’t the government any more…you know this, right?

          You’re so pathetic, you have nothing else to talk about, other than a failed party that hasn’t been ion power for 4 years.

          Are you suffering from a stroke? or are you just stupid?

  4. sandgrownan says:

    What is it about the religious and being creepily obsessed with other people’s sex lives and genitalia?

  5. concerned says:

    Practise unity. Bring everyone in this country together. Black, white, brown, gay, trans, pink or green. Make Bermuda a beautiful place to live for everyone and watch it prosper. Stop the discrimination! People don’t want to invest in a country with backwards views, they want out!

    • Boston Whaler Owner says:

      more than half the Island is green,I blame the plp.

      • Answer says:

        I think the OBA has had its day. It was mortally wounded at the hands of the arrogant triumvirate of Dunkley, Richards and Fahey. Richards gave us the Airport and Caroline Bay, Fahey gave us Pathways to Status and Dunkley oversaw it all including the Gay Marriage mess. In retrospect, all of these initiatives had some merit except for Caroline Bay but were handled and managed deplorably and as a result the OBA were unceremoniously thrown out. It was a virtual gift to the PLP who did a masterful job quietly playing these themes on the doorsteps of Bermuda prior to the previous election.

        Instead of “getting themselves up, dusting themselves off and starting all over again”, the OBA literally did nothing after the last election. Their constituency structure fell apart and nothing was rebuilt. That is the primary reason for the worst election for an Opposition Party in Bermuda since the beginning of party politics. They were unprepared and weren’t willing to do the hard and thankless work that underlies all political parties. I am doubtful that they will learn this lesson this time. I dont sense a hunger in them to be in power. The PLP is still hungry and it shows.

        I think it is time for a new start, a new political party leaning right of center, a political party led by black Bermudians. The FDM is a good start although Mr. Bean can be a bit unpredictable but leaders come and go. If they get organized and get hungry enough they could make large inroads in the next election. The secret is to start organizing now, raise funds, identify candidates, set up a constituency structure and get a policy agenda in place. Forget about mergers, forget about the OBA and just forge ahead. That’s what Bermuda needs, a new opposition party. Its time for new beginnings.

        • saud says:

          So, what you’re saying it, Bermuda is and always will be 50 years behind the rest of the world.
          Nothing new here, nothing has changed.
          Some Bermudians are racist homophobes…who think they’re special. LOL
          You have the gayest sand in the world!

      • Mich says:

        I blame the UBP. When they were in control money, jobs, tourist and the economy reached a 125% high $$$$$$.

        They go and change the name to OBA but why???

        Now look what the party is today a toilet full of it trying to stay afloat to the voters.

        • saud says:

          Again, the PLP is the government and has been for 20 years…

          Your government is begging your white British overlords for permission to discriminate. You can’t make this stuff up…it just writes itself.

          LOL, Bermuda stop embarrassing yourself to the test of the world….they’re already laughing at your stupid shorts.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “Practise unity. Bring everyone in this country together.”

      Is that what you think the PLP has been doing for the last 50 odd years?

  6. sandgrownan says:

    Still blaming the OBA, it’s pathetic. 20 years of PLP rule. 20 years. Failure, incompetence, and discrimination.

    And still whining about the OBA.

  7. LOL (original) says:

    I don’t care about what people do in their houses however look at the rest of the world this will not stop until straight people are FORCED to participate. Force education in school (why do they choose the lower grades to introduce this crap). Look at Canada and the US primary education now. Has anyone herd of Lindsey Sheppard and what they did to her? The Baker issue, you realized they tested multiple bakers till they found one that would not comply with them then tried to cancel the baker hence the new coverage. This is just a joke to them. Now I will say that if a gay couple are denied spousal rights ie hospital visits or inheritance rights where something was actually willed to them then that’s wrong and I understand those concerns but I need assurance that what is happening in other countries will not happen here.

    LOL you don’t have to agree with me but that the point we don’t tread on each other just to get what we want.

    • saud says:

      ” but I need assurance that what is happening in other countries will not happen here.”

      You want to be assured that other countries discriminate against their citizens as well?
      What business is it of yours what OTHER countries do?
      You’re nothing, you have absolutely nothing to offer the rest of the world, let alone Bermudian society.
      You’re a selfish cretin, You got your rights and now you whine like a petulant child that someone lese may be treated fairly and equally.
      You’re pathetic.

      • LOL (original) says:

        So you can address the “real” concerns of what I and others see as the break down of society?? and I’m pathetic. Nice. Hurl you personal attacks all you want cause you don’t have any answers either. Why don’t you address the the point about FORCED participation as it is laws these people want changed. I sited examples of what has already happened in other countries. Care to address that as hate speech laws seem slanted in one direction creating an unequal system. ” you have absolutely nothing to offer the rest of the world, let alone Bermudian society.” your here making money form the brilliance of our international business status so there is that. Do I need to get into the reinsurance market that Bermuda provides places like the US in disaster reinsurance that is for now still handling excess insurance needs of say the US. Sounds to me that you also have some education to get yourself. Sorry was that an unprovoked attack like your above. When you grow up some more return for an adult conversation or debt.

        LOL indeed….

        • saud says:

          Do you know what strawman is? Look it up…you’re like a child taking it’s fist steps in the world.
          No one is forcing anything upon you. Why don’t you understand that?

          What if I say you can’t get married. You’d accept that?
          Your marriage has no effect on me, just as anyone else’s marriage is none of your business.
          Maybe that’s your issue, you can’t stand other people being happy.

    • saud says:

      “we don’t tread on each other just to get what we want.”

      That’s exactly what you’re doing…you’re trying to deny someone else rights that you have, for no other reason then you don’t like gay people…which makes you a bigot and easily dismissed.

    • Mike Hind says:

      None of that is correct.

  8. Joe Bloggs says:

    I will repeat what I have been saying for many years. Take your argument for or against same sex marriage, substitute the word “black” wherever any description of a person’s sexual orientation occurs and see what your argument looks like.

  9. saud says:

    “see what your argument looks like.”

    It makes the majority look like hypocrites.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      It does, saud, but I still maintain that the majority of Bermudians do not want to discriminate. Only a vocal minority want to discriminate.

  10. saud says:

    If the majority are not bigoted, the why let a vocal minority speak for you?
    I guess the majority just don’t care.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      30-6. People outside the Progressive Labour Party cannot control how the PLP Government spends our money