Same Sex Marriage - The fight for Justice & Equality in Bermuda

by Same Love Bermuda

Same Sex Marriage - The fight for Justice & Equality in Bermuda

by Same Love Bermuda
Same Love Bermuda
Same Love Bermuda fights for Marriage Equality. The Bermuda Government has legislated replacing Same Sex Marriage with Domestic Partnerships. We seek justice to reinstate Same Sex Marriage.
6
days to go
£37,962
pledged of £50,000 stretch target by 210 people
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Same Love Bermuda
Same Love Bermuda fights for Marriage Equality. The Bermuda Government has legislated replacing Same Sex Marriage with Domestic Partnerships. We seek justice to reinstate Same Sex Marriage.
Pledge now

This case is raising funds for its stretch target. Your pledge will be collected within the next 24-48 hours (and it only takes two minutes to pledge!)

Latest: May 19, 2018

Bermuda Supreme Court "Constitutional" Legal Challenge

Supreme Court "Constitutional" legal challenge commences on Monday May 21st.
Bermudian Roderick Ferguson will challenge this legislation of discrimination with counsel Mark Pettingill. Als...

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THE FIGHT FOR EQUALITY IN BERMUDA
We are launching this crowd funding appeal in our legal fight for this important human rights issue.
Gay Bermudian, Rod Ferguson, is bringing a legal action against the Attorney General in the Bermuda Supreme Court. The case will be heard on May 21st and 22nd by Chief Justice Ian Kawaley. The case, if appealed, could go all the way to the Privy Council. 

In December of 2017, the Government of Bermuda passed domestic partnership legislation which the U.K.-appointed Governor of Bermuda gave his assent and signed into law on February 7th, 2018. This legislation reversed the 2017 decision by the Bermuda Supreme Court that originally legalized marriage equality in Bermuda.

Bermuda is the first country in the world to remove the right to marry for gay and lesbian couples.
We truly believe that this action is inconsistent with the rights bestowed upon Mr. Ferguson and the rest of the LGBTQ community under the Bermuda Constitution. Everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, is entitled to the same services and rights.

Global Outcry on Twitter
Nearly every major global Online Newspaper has carried the news on the reversal of same-sex marriage
Celebrities, politicians and journalists have either tweeted or expressed support for the Bermuda fight for marriage equality including: Sir Richard Branson, Suze Ormand, Julian Lennon, Nils Lofgren, Billie Jean King, Katie Couric, UK MP's Chris Bryant, David Lammy & Lord Michael Cashman,  John Leguizamo


Click here for Lawsuit and Originating summons

The Bermuda Supreme Court ruled on May 5th 2017 in favor of Winston & Greg Godwin-DeRoche after they were denied a marriage license by the Registrar General of Bermuda. As a result, same-sex marriage became legal in Bermuda. Only 7 months later, following a general election, the newly formed Government introduced and passed the Domestic Partnership legislation that revoked the right for same-sex couples to marry.

This creates three classes of Bermudian citizens with respect to marriage: heterosexual citizens who have had the right to marry throughout, the ten same-sex couples who married when it was legal and whose marriages remain valid, and gay and lesbian Bermudians who no longer have the right to marry, and can only enter into a domestic partnership.

Don't hurt us, help us.
Please support the LGBTQ community in Bermuda with a donation for this most important legal fight. With Bermuda becoming the first country to reverse same-sex marriage, some may feel emboldened to attempt a rollback of same-sex marriage rights in other countries. The Bermuda case has important global ramifications.

CRUISE SHIPS
Some cruise lines such as Cunard & P&O are registered in Bermuda. Sadly, the recent reversal of same-sex marriage has resulted in weddings being cancelled.

CONTACT US
Website: SameLoveBermuda
Email: tonybrannonbermuda@gmail.com

Same Love Bermuda fights for Marriage Equality. The Bermuda Government has legislated replacing Same Sex Marriage with Domestic Partnerships. We seek justice in the courts to reinstate Same Sex Marriage.



Update 16

Same Love Bermuda

May 19, 2018

Bermuda Supreme Court "Constitutional" Legal Challenge

Supreme Court "Constitutional" legal challenge commences on Monday May 21st.
Bermudian Roderick Ferguson will challenge this legislation of discrimination with counsel Mark Pettingill. Also enjoining the legal fight is Bermudian Maryellen C L Jackson represented by Rod Attride-Stirling.
Also in support of the legal fight is Carnival Cruise Lines.

The #Bermuda government legislated the reversal of Same Sex Marriage by introducing less than equal Domestic Partnerships.
Imagine a government reversing #humanrights ?

To all the Bermudian Members of Parliament that voted against Marriage Equality - we say shame on you 😥
May justice soon prevail.

It is still not too late to contribute to the legal costs. Please help with the fight for justice and equality.


Update 15

Same Love Bermuda

May 14, 2018

ONLY 8 DAYS TO GO

Only 8 days before SUPREME COURT legal challenge against the Bermuda Government. The reversal of #samesexmarriage via discriminatory legislation is "Repugnant to the Bermuda Constitution".

Please support #CrowdFunding
https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/same-sex-marriage-bermuda/

Update 14

Same Love Bermuda

May 8, 2018

BERMUDA CONSTITUTION ?

ONLY 13 days to go....
We are fighting the Government of Bermuda on May 21/22 in the Supreme Court as the government disrespected the constitutional rights of "some" Bermudians - the #LGBTQ community.

PLEASE SUPPORT #crowdfunding
https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/same-sex-marriage-bermuda/

Premier Burt's quote on the UK legislation (see image below), ordering its overseas territories to have a public register of companies.
You can't cry "Constitution" one minute when you broke or ignored it another. 

http://www.royalgazette.com/letters-to-the-editor/article/20180505/burt-right-over-heavy-handed-britain

Update 13

Same Love Bermuda

April 27, 2018

Crowd Justice Bermuda Appeal Extended

30 MORE DAYS

We are only 24 days before the start of the legal challenge in the Supreme Court of #Bermuda. Please help us to reach the next target level (50,000 pounds) to assist with the legal expenses.

NEWS - OUTBermuda talks to HRC

Last year, Bermuda made history when its Supreme Court legalized marriage equality. A few months later, Bermuda’s Parliament voted to replace it with a domestic partnerships law. The newest law, while offering partnership rights, banishes the full equality that only marriage can bestow to all couples.

HRC spoke with OUTBermuda Board of Directors Deputy Chairperson Zakiya Johnson Lord about the repeal of marriage equality and the battles ahead.

Update 12

Same Love Bermuda

April 23, 2018

5 days to go....

Update on Same Sex Marriage - The fight for Justice & Equality in Bermuda

 ONLY 5 DAYS

We are hoping to raise 50,000 pounds to support the legal costs for the Bermuda Supreme Court challenge that seeks to overturn the Domestic Partnership Legislation, declaring DP "unconstitutional".
On February 7th 2018, the Bermuda Governor gave assent to legislation that resulted in reversing Same-sex marriage in Bermuda.ONLY 4 weeks away
On May 21/22 all eyes will be on the Bermuda Supreme Court.
On behalf of Rod Ferguson and his lawyer Mark Pettingill, I want to thank you for your generous support to date.
If everyone who has donated to date can persuade a friend to contribute we can indeed reach the next goal.

TELL A FRIEND
PHONE A FRIEND
EMAIL A FRIEND

Update 11

Same Love Bermuda

April 18, 2018

BBC RADIO SPECIAL on BERMUDA Wednesday April 18th

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3csxg1s

Bermuda's Change of Heart

The Documentary

In a radical turn of events – Bermuda has become the first country in the world to repeal same-sex marriage.

In May 2017, Bermudian lawyer Mark Pettingill and his client Winston Godwin won a case in the Bermuda Supreme Court for marriage equality for all people in the LGBTQ+ community. However, less than a year later – a new government introduced the Domestic Partnership Act - taking away the rights of gay couples to marry, and given them instead the option of civil partnerships. Governor John Rankin explained that the decision was made to bring together and please the two irreconcilable groups on either side of the debate. The government says they are preserving marriage as a union between a man and a woman, but also protecting the rights of same-sex couples.

Bermudian native and spoken word artist Tiffany Paynter explores the toll this debate has taken on an island that remains divided. She investigates how this law was overturned so quickly, focussing on the experience of same-sex couples. Tiffany meets with Winston Godwin who initially won the Supreme Court case with his husband Greg De Roche. She also meets lawyer Mark Pettingill who fought their case and is now preparing another legal fight against the Bermudian government, with his client Roderick Ferguson. Tiffany also speaks with a same-sex couple who are now preparing to leave the island, Joe Gibbons and Christopher Vee.

Bermuda is also an island where there are more churches per square mile than any other country in the world. As a result – there are strong, religious attitudes that feed into this debate around rights for the LGBTQ+ community. Tiffany meets with Adrian Hartnett-Beasley who is the leader of OUT Bermuda, the official charity for LGBTQ+ people on the island, and who is also a gay, married Christian with an adopted son.

Finally, Tiffany speaks to Linda Mienzer about how a debate on same-sex rights has underlying racial divisions.

Image: Presenter Tiffany Paynter (left) with Roderick Ferguson, Credit: Anishka Sharma, Whistledown Productions

Update 10

Same Love Bermuda

April 15, 2018

Bermuda and the commonwealth

We won in Trinidad. Now it’s time to end all homophobic laws in the Commonwealth
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/13/trinidad-homphobic-laws-win-case-commonwealth?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

BERMUDA
On May 5th 2017 Same-sex marriage became legal. It was a short lived victory, as the government set about reversing this #Humanright with cynical legislation backed by #fakefacts and lies. Between the Government, Preserve Marriage, "some" religious institutions and the #media, the BIG LIE was told over and over again to justify that the country was not ready for #marriageequality.
They repeated the #fakefacts over and over again. Indeed they were so good at their lies that even the global media parroted these false numbers.

FAKE NUMBERS
In 2016 a "Non-Binding Referendum" was conducted in #Bermuda on the same day the Brits voted for #Brexit.
Less than 33% of all registered Bermudian voters said NO to Same-sex marriage. Indeed 53% of all voters stayed home. We surmise that many were aghast that a government would have a vote over equality. Further WHY VOTE in anything that is "Non-binding" ??

FAKE FACTS - 68% voted NO !
In the quest to justify reversing Same-sex marriage the Government, Preserve Marriage, "some" religious institutions and the media claimed 68% of Bermudians said NO to marriage equality.
This repeated lie is there for all to see, again, again & again.

On February 7th 2018 the Bermuda Government reversed Same-sex marriage in Bermuda after the Governor signed the Domestic Partnership legislation into law. Bermuda became the 1st (and only) country to reverse Marriage Equality.

MAY 21st & 22nd 2018
A constitutional legal challenge in the Bermuda Supreme Court in front of Chief Justice Ian Kawaley will argue that the Bermuda government took a way a right. That taking away a right of equality is indeed "Repugnant to the Constitution". This lawsuit by Rod Ferguson, represented by former Bermuda Attorney General Mark Pettingill is being joined by Maryellen Jackson, OUTBermuda, CUNARD CRUISES and lawyer Rod-Attride Stirling

PLEASE SUPPORT our #crowdfunding for this most important legal challenge to protect equality and the Human Rights of all Bermudians. Tell a friend !




Update 9

Same Love Bermuda

April 5, 2018

CARNIVAL CRUISE NEWS hits CNN

CNN's Richard Quest talks to OUTBermuda's Zakiya Johnson Lord
http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2018/04/04/qmb-bermuda-business-boycott-and-gay-marriage.cnnmoney/index.html

There is no doubt that the SPOTLIGHT on Bermuda has been raised with the support of Carnival Cruise lines in the upcoming legal fight set down for May 21st & 22nd before the Chief Justice of Bermuda, Ian Kawaley.

SAME SEX MARRIAGE becomes legal in BERMUDA
Last May 5th 2017 Same Sex Marriage became legal in Bermuda.
Former Attorney General of Bermuda Mark Pettingill, representing Winston Godwin & Greg DeRoche, and Rod Attride-Stirling, acting for the Bermuda Human Rights Commission, brilliantly argued that the Registrar General's denial of a marriage license amounted to discrimination. Indeed Justice Charles-Etta Simmons ruled that she was protecting the rights of a minority and agreed that a marriage license should be issued.

In July of 2018 a change of Government saw the new administration fulfill a campaign promise to its voters. The PLP Government introduced legislation that not only overturned Same Sex Marriage, but it also altered the legislation regarding Human Rights.

SUPREME COURT CHALLENGE
Rod Ferguson recently launched an appeal in the Supreme Court of Bermuda which is now going to be joined by OUTBermuda, Maryellen Jackson and Carnival Cruises.


Bermuda has had awful PR and suffered global condemnation for reversing a right granted to Same-sex couples. Indeed Bermuda is the first country to reverse Same-sex marriage. The cost and losses in cancelled holiday bookings has been considerable.

HUMAN RIGHTS DREAM TEAM
Mark Pettingill and Rod Attride-Stirling will again challenge the Bermuda Government on May 21st and May 22nd. They will argue that the Bermuda governments Domestic Partnerships legislation contravenes the Bermuda Constitution.

Success in the courts will restore equality for all in Bermuda and will indeed help to rehab Bermuda's reputation, which has taken a pounding from Sir Richard Branson, Ellen DeGeneres and indeed thousands more in the media.

The Legal costs are indeed considerable, and we ask for your continued support of our Crowd Funding campaign.






Update 8

Same Love Bermuda

April 4, 2018

Carnival cruise line joins Bermuda legal fight

Carnival joins in fight for Equality

OUTBermuda and Maryellen Jackson have filed legal action in the Bermuda Supreme Court seeking an order declaring that provisions that “have the effect of revoking same-sex marriage” are in contravention of the Bermuda Constitution, with the local legal action — which marks the second filed about the matter — being backed by the Carnival cruise line.

http://bernews.com/2018/04/carnival-supporting-new-ssm-legal-action/



Update 7

Same Love Bermuda

March 29, 2018

Please help us restore Justice, Equality & Human Rights in Bermuda.

THANK YOU
On behalf of Rod Ferguson, we would like to thank all of those who have donated over a total of 35,000 pounds towards the legal costs of the upcoming legal challenge in the Bermuda Supreme Court. We still have a long way to go!

Last night a leading Insurance executive in Bermuda responded to our request for support.
"Consider it done. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it is in the best interests of Bermuda relative to our perception in the international community".

APPEAL
We have been involved in campaigning for the rights of the #Bermuda #LGTBQ community. Indeed, we won a Supreme Court decision last year that made Same-sex marriage legal in Bermuda.

Sadly, this past February 7th the Governor signed into law legislation that reversed the right for same-sex couples to get married in Bermuda.

We are going back to the Bermuda Supreme Court this coming May 21st /22nd.
The legal costs for this court challenge will approach $ 250,000. Former Bermuda Attorney General, Mark Pettingill of Chancery Legal, is heading up the legal team.

In order to assist Rod Ferguson who is challenging the law, we created a #crowdfunding appeal on Rods behalf hosted by Crowd Justice.
To date we have raised just over 35,000 pounds.

Any support towards this most important court case would be truly appreciated.
Human Rights are priceless.

Please Support
https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/same-sex-marriage-bermuda
Please help the campaign and tell your friends.
#LoveWins

Regards
Rod Ferguson & Tony Brannon
www.samelovebermuda.com




Update 6

Same Love Bermuda

March 23, 2018

We can reach 50,000 pounds with your help


HELP US REACH the next target of 50,000 pounds.

We would like to thank all of you who have generously contributed towards supporting Rod Ferguson in his legal battle. The upcoming case is getting closer and the legal team, headed up by former Bermuda Attorney General of Bermuda Mark Pettingill, is working diligently in preparing the "Constitutional Argument" that essentially says that Domestic Partnerships took away a right granted to a minority and as such is "Repugnant to the Bermuda Constitution".

Crowd Justice just posted this twitter message on behalf of Rod Ferguson.
https://twitter.com/CrowdJustice/status/977217962737364996

Please spread the word as the best way to support Rod & the Bermuda #LGBTQ community is to support the legal challenge.

Update 5

Same Love Bermuda

March 16, 2018

The fight for justice and equality needs your help !

WE NEED YOUR HELP
Our Crowd Justice campaign is 2 weeks old. We are over 50% of the way to our next fundraising goal. We have 2 weeks to go to reach the next level. 

#Bermuda is the 1st country to reverse Same-sex marriage. The government did so with legislation, overruling the Supreme Court of Bermuda with an Act of Parliament. Imagine your country taking away a right? Don't think it can't happen in your country.

#HumanRights are for everyone. Everyone is entitled to the same rights. No group should have more rights than another.
History is full of battles to fight discrimination. It is therefore important, that we go to the Supreme Court of Bermuda to challenge the Domestic Partnerships legislation. Indeed, because this legal challenge focuses primarily on the Bermuda Constitution, the battle may go all the way to the Privy Council.
Justice and Equality are priceless. However, the legal costs are not free.
 
The importance of winning this legal challenge is vital not only for Bermuda and Bermudians and the #LGBTIQ+ community, but the results of the legal rulings can and will affect other people in other countries.

WE MUST WIN THIS FIGHT.

Update 4

Same Love Bermuda

March 9, 2018

Don't Boycott !

Thank You to everyone who has supported our Crowd Justice appeal.
128 people have donated almost 25,000 pounds in just one week and we are well on our way to reaching the next target of 50,000 pounds. Just imagine if 1000 people donated. Indeed, 10,000 would be amazing!

The Best Way To Help
The legal challenge is the appropriate channel to see justice and equality in #Bermuda.
Some folks have reacted to the Bermuda Government's Domestic Partnerships legislation with calls for a boycott. 

We ask everyone - "Don't Boycott Bermuda" - it will only hurt people that have already put up with discrimination for enough decades already. The way to help Bermuda is to come visit us or support our appeal for the constitutional legal challenge on Crowd Justice.

Don't forget to tell your friends that you supported the fight for Justice & Equality
Here is a little music by Bermuda's own Heather Nova
Love Wins
https://soundcloud.com/heather-nova/love-wins-heather-nova-1

Update 3

Same Love Bermuda

March 7, 2018

Bermudian Rod Ferguson tells his story...

As A Survivor Of Bermuda's Homophobia I Want To Do All I Can For Same-Sex Marriage Rights

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/im-a-survivor-of-bermudas-homophobia-i-want-to-do-all-i-can-for-same-sex-marriage-rights_uk_5a9961d3e4b0479c0251cfc6

We wanted to share with you all a little bit about Rod Ferguson who is bringing the legal challenge to the Supreme Court in Bermuda.
Please share his Huffington Post story!

CROWD FUNDING

We have nearly reach 10,000 pounds and we have 40k more to go. We can do this.
Thanks to everyone who has supported to date. This fight for equality is bigger than just #Bermuda as it has global ramifications - We must win this Constitutional Challenge.
Losing is not an option !
This appeal to support Rod Ferguson's legal challenge is indeed targeted to everyone, everywhere who believes in Equality, Justice & #HumanRights.

#SameLoveBermuda




Update 2

Same Love Bermuda

March 5, 2018

1st target for crowd funding has been reached - Thank you

On behalf of Rod Ferguson we would like to thank you for your generous support.
As of this update, 57 people have contributed 5,120 pounds to this most important Supreme Court case.

There are millions of people in the global #LGBTQI community and we hope some of you can support this most important fight for Justice and Equality.

The Bermuda case has implications for Marriage Equality in other countries. Indeed we have seen how the recent Bermuda government reversal, via legislation, of Same-sex marriage has resulted in another lawsuit regarding Bermuda registered cruise ships. Cruise lines like Cunard and P&O cruises are no longer able to marry same-sex couples as they are bound by Bermuda law.

All this upset and fallout could have easily have been avoided if the Bermuda government had accepted the Supreme Court ruling of May 5th 2017 that made same-sex marriage legal in Bermuda.
Sadly the government proceeded to draft legislation that reversed Same-sex marriage in Bermuda. This was signed into law on February 7th 2018 by the Governor of Bermuda (appointed by the UK).
Bermuda is the 1st country in the world to reverse same-sex marriage.

Domestic Partnerships have replaced marriage for same-sex couples. No country anywhere recognizes Domestic Partnerships and they will only be valid in Bermuda.

The estimated cost of the May 21/22nd court case is $ 250,000. We must raise the funds either via Crowd Funding or private donations to pay for the legal fees.

We urge the global #LGBTQI community to support the legal fight. If 24,500 people donated just 10 pounds each - the legal costs are covered.

So far 57 people have donated 5,120 pounds which is an average donation of 90 pounds per person. If that same stat was to play out, all we need is 2,722 people to contribute at that amount to raise funds for the legal challenge.
If the average donation was 50 pounds all we need is 4,900 people.
Indeed if the average donation was 25 pounds, all we need is 9,800 people.

Thanks to everyone who donated so far and, with your help, we look forward to this campaign reaching  the final target.

Update 1

Same Love Bermuda

March 2, 2018

We have hit 50% of the initial target in half a day !

Hello all, we are 50% of the way on our initial target on day 1.
Once we meet the initial target of 5,000 pounds we are on our way.

This is a most important legal case 
The importance cannot be overstated, not only for Bermudians, but for any one wishing to get married in Bermuda regardless of sexual orientation.

Indeed, the fact that Bermuda is the 1st country to reverse same-sex marriage has given rise to others to call for the reversal of Human Rights in other countries.
Other legal challenges can point to and argue any legal decision that arises from the court challenge in Bermuda.

The legal team see a winnable path, arguing that reversing same-sex marriage is repugnant to the Bermuda Constitution.
Losing is not an option. Human Rights are not negotiable and to legislate them away from any group must be rigorously opposed.

The cost of the 1st round of legal fees are estimated to be $ 250,000. We have a long way to go. We are 1% of the way there so far today, but 50% of the way on our initial modest target.
Human Rights are priceless and we appreciate all the support from the Bermuda and global #LGBTQI community and indeed everyone who supports Human Rights.
Please encourage others to donate

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