As part of its consultative process, the Government is soon to engage with representative groups and many of the individuals who responded to the Command Paper for Consultation on Equal Marriage. The Government has received 3490 responses said a statement – from multi-signatory groups, some by means of petitions and some as individuals.
Chief Minister Fabian Picardo said this is an issue which had raised controversy in some sections of our Community and which deserves “our careful consideration as a Government so that we may fully understand the concerns of people on all sides of the arguments”.
“We want to respectfully consider the positions which have been put to us in writing on this subject and will do so with a cross section of the Cabinet,” he added.
The Command Paper, which was published in December of last year, on the possibility of legalising civil marriage between same sex couples had attracted significant public interest and comment across the community and the Government will now pursue in further detail direct interaction with various groups and individuals on representations made to the Command Paper.
The standard time frame of two weeks, which is the norm for Command Papers, was later extended to three weeks due to the Christmas break and the extent of public interest in this matter.
The Government confirmed an Inter-Ministerial Committee had now been established to listen to the views of the various groups and many of the individuals who expressed a view on this subject. The Inter-Ministerial Committee will comprise: Gilbert Licudi, Samantha Sacramento, Neil Costa and Albert Isola.
In line with a commitment made in last year’s GSLP/Liberal Manifesto, added the statement, the Committee will report its findings back to Cabinet by the June of this year.