Civil partnerships for straight couples might become a reality soon

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The House of Commons has overwhelmingly backed a plan to fast-track the extension of the concept of civil partnerships to include opposite-sex couples. Civil partnerships were introduced in 2004 as a segregated form of union for same-sex couples, but later same-sex marriages were introduced. Civil partnerships remained, so same-sex couples were allowed to choose whether to marry or to enter civil partnership, while heterosexual couples have a right only to marry. So, the campaigners started to fight to change it.The government has already voiced support for opening up civil partnerships, after the UK’s Supreme Court ruled that straight and gay couples have equal options in registering their relationships according to the Constitution, so if gay couples have civil partnerships as an option, then straight couples should have the same option, otherwise it is illegal. Parliament on Friday (October 26) gave its backing to backbench legislation from Tory MP Tim Loughton, who directs the government to open civil partnerships to all couples. The bill now moves to the House of Lords. The six-month deadline would apply from the moment the bill gains Royal Assent, which the Equal Civil Partnership campaign says should be expected by “early 2019.”

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