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Civil Ceremonies in British Parliament


Prime Minister Gordon Brown has asked the parliament to allow civil ceremonies to be performed in the Palace of Westminster, where the Houses of Parliament meet.

"Just as marriages can take place in the [parliament], we hope Mr. Speaker will consider that civil ceremonies could take place here," Brown said in his address, reports the U.K.-based Christian Institute.

Currently, members of parliament and their families can get married and perform christenings in the Chapel of St. Mary Undercroft at the Palace of Westminster.

As with any religious institution, St. Mary cannot be required to perform same-sex ceremonies, but Gordon proposed there be a separate location within the Palace of Westminster where all couples can register their unions.

Westminster Hall is a likely venue that has been suggested, according to TheTimes of London.

Brown has been vocal about his support for LGBT equality. The prime minister, who called Proposition 8 "unacceptable," told the BBC back in May, "We have always got to be vigilant, always got to fight homophobic behavior and any form of discrimination."

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Christopher Mangum