Couple fail in Privy Council Cayman same-sex marriage bid
Privy Council judges yesterday dismissed an appeal from two women who wanted a legally recognised marriage in the Cayman Islands.
Chantelle Day and Vickie Bodden Bush challenged a Court of Appeal ruling that the overseas territory’s Bill of Rights did not confer a right on same-sex couples to marry and have their marriage recognised in law.
The five-judge panel — Lord Reed, Lord Hodge, Lady Arden, Lord Sales and Dame Victoria Sharp — was the same as the one that heard arguments in Bermuda’s same-sex marriage case.
It ruled that Section 14 of Cayman’s Bill of Rights confined the right of marriage to opposite-sex couples.
The board found that its interpretation of the Bill was supported by case law related to the European Convention on Human Rights, where Article 12 “had been held to enshrine the traditional concept of marriage as being between a man and a woman”.
The ruling added: “The board takes this opportunity to reiterate the point made by the Court of Appeal, that the interpretation to be given to the Bill of Rights as explained in this judgment does not prevent the Legislative Assembly from introducing legislation to recognise same-sex marriage.
“The effect of the interpretation endorsed by the board is that this is a matter for the choice of the Legislative Assembly rather than a right laid down in the Constitution.”
* To read the judgment in full, click on the PDF under “Related Media”.
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