Final Scottish gay marriage vote set to be next month

MSPs are expected to vote for the final time on Scotland’s plan to redefine marriage on Tuesday 4 February.

Scottish politicians will consider amendments to the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill before making a final decision on it.

The news was revealed in a parliamentary business motion which is yet to be approved – but such a move is usually a formality.

Concerns

Last month MSPs voted down protections for public sector workers, charities and people considering adoption, when they considered the legislation at committee stage.

Scotland for Marriage, which supports traditional marriage, said warnings about the Bill were being ignored.

In November the legislation’s general principles were backed by MSPs by 98 votes to 15. But some politicians raised serious concerns.

Ignored

The SNP’s John Mason said he opposed the Bill because marriage is between a man and a woman, and there is a lack of safeguards for those who disagree.

And Labour MSP Elaine Smith said the proposals fail to protect free speech for traditional marriage supporters.

In July 2012 the Scottish Government ignored its own public consultation on the issue, and announced plans to redefine marriage over the heads of the Scottish people.

Around 80,000 consultation responses were received by the Government, with two thirds opposed.

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