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Wednesday 19 September 2018
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Religious leaders want law to prevent same sex marriage

Call for Marriage Act to be amended, Equal Opportunities Act to be left alone

United we stand: Religious leaders meet to call on Government to protect the traditional family and amend the Marriage Act. Photo: Azlan Mohammed

A group of religious leaders, including Archbishop Jason Gordon and Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha Secretary General Sat Maharaj, have called on Government to amend the Marriage Act to prevent the introduction of same sex marriage and for no amendments to the Equal Opportunity Act that would facilitate the LGBTQIA community.

The statement was made at a media conference on Monday facilitated by the group Rebuild TT and held at Archbishop House, Queen's Park Savannah.

The group wants the Marriage Act to be amended to entrench a union as being between a biological male and biological female and want this amendment passed in Parliament by a special majority and by the first session of the next Parliament in September.

Gordon said the opinion that marriage was for the unification of spouses and procreating of children was shared by Muslim, Hindu and Christian communities.

"We believe our society and fabric of Trinidad and Tobago as we know it is at risk."

He said the belief that gender was no longer a fact was a "pernicious lie" that has created a lot of problems for children and the global society.

Maharaj said homosexual activity is forbidden in the Hindu religion and there was no room for same sex marriage.

"It has always been our position that marriage is between a male and a female to ensure nature's law prevails."

Seventh Day Adventist Pastor Clive Dottin said central to the discussion was the protection of society and traditional family as outlined by the scriptures.

"The traditional family is under attack."

Anjuman Sunnat-ul-Jamaat Association President Yacoob Ali said if the good Lord wanted same sex marriage to happen "it would have been Adam and Steve not Adam and Eve."

Rev Desmond Austin of the TT Council of Evangelical Churches said the Constitution established God as supreme and His laws matter and marriage matters. He said globally there is an aggressive legal and political effort to undermine the basic institutions of marriage and family.

The group plans to present a joint statement to Parliament. The meeting comes following a High Court ruling in April that the buggery law was unconstitutional; the law has not been repealed.

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