Consultation on the Draft Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill: Analysis of Written Responses

This report presents the findings of the independent analysis of responses to the Scottish Government's consultation on the draft Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill. The consultation ran from 12 December 2012 to 20 March 2013, and sought views on the detail of the legislation that will introduce same sex marriage, allow civil partnerships to be registered through religious or belief ceremonies and make other changes to marriage law.




3. Only comments made by respondents who asked for their response to be published have been included within the version for publication.

4. Most of the duplicate responses received were of the campaign type.

5. All but a very few contained identical content in each response of the duplicate or multiple responses made by the same respondent.

6. The Respondent Information Form gathers name and contact information and also asks respondents whether they would like their response to be published.

7. A breakdown of all responses received, number of responses removed and final number of responses that were analysed is set out in Annex B to this report.

8. 'Non-standard' responses were those that did not use the standard Scottish Government response form and were not campaign responses.

9. Within the 'Political groups and unions' and 'Religious or faith-based organisations' categories (as well as the 'Other groups or organisations' category), a number of respondents had clear affiliations with the LGBT community.

10. This was not the intention.

11. This point is mentioned in the Gender Recognition Panel's Frequently Asked Questions guidance:

12. Available at:

13. This issue is the subject of Question 5 and is discussed in greater depth later in this report.

14. These comments did not make clear how the respondent anticipated this situation i.e. a body being prescribed when one of its celebrants did not wish to solemnise same sex marriage, could arise.

15. Ibid.

16. Available at:

17. See for the relevant provisions of the Abortion Act 1967

18. Lillian Ladele worked as a marriage registrar for Islington Borough Council in London. Miss Ladele claimed that Islington Council discriminated against her by requiring her to perform civil partnerships despite this being against her religious beliefs. The European Court of Human Rights held that there had been no violation of the European Convention on Human Rights in this case:{"itemid":["001-115881"]}

19. The frequently cited research, Life in Scotland for LGBT Young People: Education Report (2012) can be accessed at:

20. See page 32 of the Convention:

21. This issue was covered within paragraphs 3.14-3.18 of the consultation document, immediately prior to the section on other consequentials as a result of same sex marriage.

22. This issue is not connected with bigamy, but the coverage in the consultation document was soon after Question 15 and the issue was not covered in a dedicated question.

23. Ibid.

24. Most pensions law is reserved to the UK Government.


Email: Alison Stout

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