Shadow minister resigns over 'misjudged' comments on gay marriage

7 December 2020, 13:02

Janet Daby has apologised for the "misjudged" remarks
Janet Daby has apologised for the "misjudged" remarks. Picture: PA

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Labour's minister for faith has resigned after saying registrars have a right to oppose gay marriage.

Janet Daby said last week that registrars who have a religious objection to same-sex marriages should be protected from losing their jobs if they refuse to certify the partnership.

According to The Telegraph, she said there "needs to be something in place that protects people of faith as well as those who think the other way". 

"It is an issue of conscience. It is like people having a choice who, for reasons of conscience, cannot participate in conducting an abortion," she said.

The Lewisham East MP "sincerely" apologised for the "misjudged" remarks on Monday and said she would stand down from her frontbench role.

She wrote on Twitter: "I'm proud to support same-sex marriages. On Saturday Labour celebrated 15 years of civil partnerships, and all the progress we've made since.

"I sincerely apologise for my misjudged comments on Friday, and have decided to resign as Shadow Faith Minister."

A Labour spokesman said: "Janet Daby has today stood down from her role as a shadow minister.

"We will appoint a replacement in due course."

Refusing to perform same-sex weddings as a registrar is unlawful discrimination.