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OutBermuda welcomes 'final hurdle' in same sex marriage battle

Supporters of same-sex marriage and Preserve Marriage demonstrators at a 2016 on the grounds of Cabinet (File photograph)

A gay rights charity that fought for same-sex marriage in Bermuda’s courts has welcomed its last legal challenge this week.

OutBermuda hailed its “final appeal in London for Bermuda’s historic marriage equality decision”.

Legal arguments will be heard at the Privy Council tomorrow and on Thursday.

A decision by the Britain’s highest court of appeal should be given “within the next months”.

OutBermuda will be represented with fellow Bermudian plaintiffs Roderick Ferguson, Maryellen Jackson, Gordon Campbell, the Parlour Tabernacle of the Vision Church of Bermuda and Sylvia Hayward, by a Bermudian team led by Lord David Pannick, QC.

Zakiya Lord, the deputy chairwoman of OutBermuda, called it a “milestone”.

Mr Ferguson, whose lawsuit prompted a 2018 Supreme Court ruling backing same-sex marriage, said support for marriage rights in Bermuda was “greater than ever before”.

Mr Ferguson added that “we trust the Privy Council to rule in our favour”.

“We now stand before the world to ratify the wisdom of Bermuda’s courts and to preserve same-sex marriage rights in Bermuda.”

Adrian Hartnett-Beasley, the chair of OutBermuda, said: “Bermuda will be on the world stage this week to advocate for equality under the law for all our families including my own.”

Mr Hartnett-Beasley married his husband, Shane, in New York in 2015.

He said: “We knew our struggle would be long and difficult, but we have never wavered in seeking justice for all Bermudians.”

Same-sex marriage has been allowed to go ahead in Bermuda since a Supreme Court ruling in 2017, but has been subjected to a legal battle ever since.

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Published February 01, 2021 at 1:40 pm (Updated February 01, 2021 at 9:38 pm)

OutBermuda welcomes 'final hurdle' in same sex marriage battle

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