Debates between Baroness D'Souza and Lord Lexden during the 2017-2019 Parliament

Fri 1st Feb 2019

Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration Etc.) Bill

Debate between Baroness D'Souza and Lord Lexden
Lord Lexden Portrait Lord Lexden (Con)
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My Lords, I say to the noble Baroness, Lady Barker—my friend in many contexts, but not in that of sibling couples and civil partnerships—that I would be pleasantly astonished if my noble friend failed to give her the reassurances she sought. It is clear that the Government have no intention of extending civil partnerships in the way I would wish. I set out at length at Second Reading the unfairness and injustice sibling couples who are committed to each other in strong, stable and platonic associations have endured for far too long because they are denied civil partnerships. I will not repeat the points I made then. I should be very interested to hear what my noble friend has to say, but I do not expect the pleasant surprise I wish for.

I have not tabled amendments to this important Bill that would cause proceedings on it to be extended. I simply say this to the Government, assuming that I am right: committed, platonic sibling couples, some of whom have shared their lives for 50 years and more, look on with astonishment and anger as a political party that ought to value the family units they have created together does nothing to relieve them from the constant anxieties they endure in the absence of joint legal rights.

Baroness D'Souza Portrait Baroness D’Souza (CB)
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My Lords, may I ask a very naive question? I ask the Committee’s forgiveness if this has already been answered. What happens if there were to be a civil partnership between a brother and sister—let us say the brother and sister are Jill and John—and then Jill meets Jack and decides that she wants to marry him? Can she marry Jack and thereby have a marriage and a civil partnership?