The governor of British island Bermuda just signed a bill to replace same-sex marriage with domestic partnerships, making Bermuda the first country to repeal marriage equality for same-sex couples, the Associated Press reports.
Gov. John Rankin said the move was meant to appease those who oppose same-sex marriage while guaranteeing queer couples the same legal protections as opposite-sex couples. He called same-sex couples’ rights “equivalent” to straight ones under the new law.
The move drew the ire of the international LGBTQ community.
“As the world faces a resurgence of anti-LGBTQ activism, Bermuda just earned the shameful recognition of becoming the first national territory to strip away marriage from loving and committed LGBTQ couples,” Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD said in a statement. “LGBTQ couples and their children in Bermuda should know that the global community of LGBTQ people and allies will stand with them in rectifying this unjust and hurtful news. Love can never be rolled back.”
Marriage equality has been the law of the land in Bermuda since May 2017. Marriages sanctioned in that time will still be recognized as marriage by law, according to the Associated Press.
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