We have submitted additional written evidence to the Scottish Parliament Equal Opportunities Committee on the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill. Our additional evidence addresses some of the points raised in four weeks of oral evidence sessions.
Our original evidence to the Equal Opportunities Committee explains why equal marriage is needed. Together with the evidence from the Scottish Transgender Alliance based at the Equality Network, it also sets out a number of small but important amendments that we think are needed to ensure that the bill delivers equal marriage for all LGBT people.
The Equal Opportunities Committee has spent the past four weekly meetings (5th to 26th September) taking oral evidence on the bill from interested parties, including the national LGBT organisations on 5th September. You can read the official reports of the meetings, or watch videos of the meetings.
This Thursday, 3rd October, the Committee will take evidence from the Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary in charge of the bill, Alex Neil. The Committee will then begin to consider its “stage 1 report”, which is a report about the bill, for consideration by the whole Parliament. That report may be published around the start of November. And then sometime in November, the whole Parliament will debate the bill, and will vote on whether to let it proceed to stage 2.
If the Parliament votes to let the bill proceed, it will then go back to the Equal Opportunities Committee for amendments to be debated and voted on (stage 2). And finally, perhaps around February, the bill will go back to the whole Parliament for the stage 3 debate, which include further votes on amendments, and a final vote on whether to pass the bill.