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Meg attends Civil Partnership in Sydney

Thursday, May 15, 2008

During her recent Ministerial visit to Australia, Meg was delighted to witness the registration of a Civil Partnership between British Citizen Matthew Coombs and his Australian partner Ricky Fisher. Their Civil Partnership was the 143rd registered in the Sydney office of the British Consul since the Civil Partnership Act (2004) came into effect in the United Kingdom in December 2005.


Meg was the Minister for Women and Equality in December 2005 and was responsible for overseeing the introduction of the legislation. She attended a number of the first Civil Partnerships in the UK; this was the first one she attended in an overseas country.


Meg said:


“I was grateful to Matthew and Ricky for letting me share their special day. It was wonderful to be reminded of the joy that this legislation has brought to same sex couples and to see it making a difference to British citizens around the world.”


Civil partnership registration allows same sex couples to have their relationship legally recognised under UK law. Australia has no legal equivalent, although the new Australian Government is committed to eliminating discrimination against same sex couples in many areas of law.


By registering their relationship it gives them the same rights as a married couple in areas like tax, social security, inheritance and workplace benefits. The Act also applies to British nationals resident in Australia, who are able to register a Civil Partnership, with either another British citizen or the citizen of another country.

Associated Photograph :

Meg with Matthew and Ricky.

Meg with Matthew and Ricky.

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