The legislation legalising both same-sex marriage and opposite-sex civil partnerships in the Isle of Man was signed by Queen Elizabeth II today.
The legislation, to be exact, was the Marriage and Civil Partnership Amendment Act and allows same-sex couples to marry either in a civil ceremony, or on religious premises, as long as the ceremony is not a Church of England, subject to agreement to the religious organisation.
This law is now in immediate effect, and comes after the Chief Minister Allan Bell revealed he had been in a gay relationship for 21 years.
He said: “Recognition of marriage for same sex couples in Manx law is a truly historic moment, showing just how far the Island has travelled over the past 30 years. It sends out a clear message that the Isle of Man today is a modern, open and inclusive society where equal rights are respected. I believe that the values of fairness and tolerance reflected in this legislation are shared by the overwhelming majority of our population.”
“Everyone who loves their partner, whether same-sex or otherwise, must have equal rights to share their lives. It’s a totally logical human right and human expectation that straight couples and gay couples should be able to enjoy life with the partner that they choose.”
This means that marriage equality is now in England, Wales, the Isle of Man and Scotland. It is not yet available in Northern Ireland, despite staunch campaigning from LGBT advocacy groups.