Gay weddings, on land or at sea, are no longer permitted in
Bermuda because the island has implemented a law that disallows same-sex
The law, called the Domestic Partnership Act, reverses
Bermuda's legalization of same-sex marriage last May.
Cruise lines won't be allowed to host same-sex wedding
ceremonies on ships registered in Bermuda. P&O Cruises, Cunard Line and
Princess are three lines that have ships registered in the British territory.
Cunard in a statement said, "Having been delighted and
wholly supportive of the Bermuda government's change in law last May, which
allowed us to conduct same-sex marriages on board our ships, we are
disappointed with this outcome."
Bermuda will permit domestic partnerships and guarantee
certain rights, such as the right to inherit in the case of no will and the
right to make medical decisions on behalf of one's partner.
Minister of Home Affairs Walton Brown calls the new law "a
fair balance between two currently irreconcilable groups in Bermuda."
He noted the results of a nonbinding referendum last June
that showed a majority of Bermudians opposing same-sex marriage. The referendum
asked, "Are you in favor of same-sex marriage in Bermuda?" and 69%
said no, 31% yes. Further, 63% percent said they were not in favor of same-sex
The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation excoriated
"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," said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD.
Brown said that Bermuda "will continue to live up to
its well-earned reputation as a friendly and welcoming place, where all
visitors, including LGBT visitors, will continue to enjoy our beauty, our warm
hospitality and inclusive culture."