Backstory: In 2017, the Supreme Court of Bermuda declared that same-sex couples had a legal right to marry in the territory after a couple filed suit against the Bermudian Government. However, a bill to ban same-sex marriage and establish domestic partnerships was passed by the Parliament in December 2017 and went into effect on 1 June 2018 though same-sex marriages performed before that day remained legally recognized.
Two legal challenges were filed opposing the domestic partnership law. On 6 June 2018, the Supreme Court struck down the parts of the domestic partnership law that banned same-sex marriages but stayed the ruling while the government appealed to the Court of Appeal. It upheld the right of same-sex couples to marry when it handed down its ruling on 23 November 2018. On 14 March 2022 the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council ruled against the Court of Appeal, banning same-sex marriage once again which ruled 4-1.
The only dissenting opinion came from Lord Sales, who wrote that the right to marry was implicit in the constitution and cannot be interpreted as limited to heterosexual couples. He argued that the Bermuda government’s refusal to recognize same-sex marriage “interferes with the ability of same-sex couples to act in accordance with their conscience and breaches the state’s duty of neutrality between different conscientious or religious beliefs.”
In 2019, before the beginning of the COVID pandemic Bermuda’s internal travel and tourism consumption amounted to 990 million U.S. dollars, and cruises from the U.S. go to Bermuda, almost 200 port calls per year.
We should really do something to change that.