Governor Martyn Roper’s statement following the defeat in the LA of the Domestic Partnership Bill on 29 July 2020

“I recognise the great sensitivity and strong emotions aroused across our community by the debate on the Domestic Partnerships Bill. There were many high quality and passionate speeches by members of the Legislative Assembly on both sides of this difficult debate. I am nonetheless greatly concerned that the Legislative Assembly has not passed the Bill.

“It is a sad day for the rule of law in the Cayman Islands, a cornerstone of our democracy. The Grand Court, Court of Appeal and the Cayman Islands Government itself, have all recognised that there is a clear legal obligation on the Legislative Assembly to provide a framework to end discrimination against same sex couples. The Legislative Assembly has an overriding responsibility to uphold the rule of law to ensure it is compliant with the Cayman Islands Constitution, Court of Appeal Judgement and the European Convention on Human Rights.

“I appreciate the considerable efforts of the Honourable Premier and Attorney-General to find the best compromise and balance for the country between our clear legal commitments and the strong views of many in the community on this issue. I believe the draft Bill achieved that objective by protecting the institution of marriage, which I know is of such great importance to many. UK Ministers will consider carefully the implications of the Bill’s defeat.”