REGINA, Saskatchewan, February 8, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Saskatchewan Justice Minister Don Morgan has advised MP Maurice Vellacott that though he has considered other options for marriage commissioners who do not want to perform ceremonies for homosexual couples, such as the “single entry point” system used in Ontario, he has “found no workable options. We have accepted the court decision.”
In January the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal ruled in a non-binding decision that allowing commissioners to refuse to perform same-sex “marriages” would send “a strong and sinister message” that “gays and lesbians are less worthy of protection as individuals in Canada’s society.”
In response, proponents of religious freedom and conscience rights had suggested that the government institute the “single entry point” system, a compromise measure where those wanting to get married would call a single number, instead of going directly to individual marriage commissioners. Under this system, homosexuals would only be referred to commissioners who would be willing to “marry” them.
However, in a letter dated February 1, 2011, which Vellacott made available to LifeSiteNews, Morgan argued: “To embark on a single entry point system would mean effectively terminating nearly 400 marriage commissioners in the province and transferring the work to full-time civil servants. Our government has decided not to do that.”
The Justice Minister added, “the court has suggested that even if we did establish a single entry point system, it may not stand up in court in any event.”
Morgan was responding to a letter sent to him by Dr. Vellacott, MP for Saskatoon-Wanuskewin, in which the MP expressed his concern with the court’s ruling. Vellacott had argued that the court decision violated the provisions of the 2005 Civil Marriage Act, the federal law which implemented same sex “marriage” in Canada. That law specifically included a provision intended to protect freedom of conscience and religion.
To this, Morgan told Vellacott: “With respect to your statement that the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal Marriage Act reference decision violates the provisions of the federal 2005 Civil Marriage Act, my Ministry does not take that position.”