Metro Weekly

Cruise line Carnival will fight Bermuda’s same-sex marriage ban

Bermuda's ban on same-sex marriage prevents cruise ships from holding same-sex weddings onboard

Carnival Sunshine

Carnival Corp., the parent company of a number of cruise lines, announced this week that they will help push for same-sex marriage to be restored in Bermuda.

Earlier this year Bermuda became the first territory in the world to repeal marriage equality, after the governor signed into law a bill that replaces same-sex marriages with domestic partnerships.

The move has forced cruise lines like Carnival, which register their ships in Bermuda and are thus subject to its laws, to cancel same-sex weddings onboard ships.

Carnival, which has 24 Bermuda-based cruise ships in operation, announced it would provide financial, civic and PR relations to OUTBermuda, which is mounting a legal challenge to the nation’s marriage repeal.

Carnival said that being active in the fight was important because their company is “committed to equality, inclusion and diversity.”

“While we always abide by the laws of the countries we sail to and from, we believe travel and tourism brings people and cultures together in powerful ways,” Carnival said in a statement. “As a result, we believe it is important to stand by the LGBTQ community in Bermuda and its many allies to oppose any actions that restrict travel and tourism.”

OUTBermuda said in a statement that it was “proud” to have Carnival on its side. They also noted that OUTBermuda and another plaintiff, Maryellen Jackson, are preparing to join their cases and take it to the Bermuda Supreme Court as a unified front.

“OUTBermuda and Ms. Jackson are actively preparing evidence for submission this week and an application to join their case to the Ferguson v Attorney General case so both cases can be heard together,” they said. “The trial in the related action is set to be heard by the Chief Justice in May. The two legal teams involved have been in contact.”


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