France: Mayors unite in petition against gay marriage
A group of Mayors across France have launched a petition against gay marriage, demanding the right for town halls to refuse to conduct same-sex ceremonies.
The group, called “Mayors for Childhood”, established in 2006, sent the petition to 150,000 mayors and deputy mayors yesterday.
“[In the petition] we ask them if they are for or against homosexual marriage, and if they want a clause in the law which would allow them to refuse these types of marriages,” Philippe Gosselin, spokesperson for the association and UMP Mayor of La Manche said.
The law is due to go before the cabinet in three weeks. In September Mayors for Childhood asked Christina Taubira, Minister for Justice, for the right to be consulted on the law.
“We will eventually find ourselves with a big problem if the right to refuse is not included in the law. If all mayors refuse to perform these marriages, the police are going to have to charge all those who refuse,” said Gosselin.
“Mayors are the first people affected by the new law, and we do not understand why the government did not consult us - even though they promised to do so while campaigning,” said Daniel Delaune, a member of Mayors for Childhood.