Local Councillor Julian Stanyer has written to Greg Clark MP in advance of Tuesday’s debate to bring him up to date with the results of a survey of local conservative supporters in the Speldhurst & Bidborough Ward who were asked to indicate whether they strongly disagreed/agreed/neither agreed or disagreed/agreed or strongly agreed with the proposals.
The result of the poll, which achieved a 82.22% response is indicated below.
Strongly Disagree 73.33%
Neither Agree nor Disagree 5.49%
Strongly Agree 1.33%
“A number of people found it difficult knowing how to respond because they are intrinsically in support of legal changes in recent years to remove unjustified discrimination and create greater legal rights for same sex couples.
However, they also thought that to change the nature of marriage for everyone will be divisible and deliver no obvious legal gains given the rights already conferred by civil partnerships.
They also believe that imposing for essentially idealogical reasons a new meaning on a term as familiar and fundamental as marriage would be deeply unwise.
In addition, several supporters expressed serious doubts whether the proposed legal protection for churches and faiths for discrimination claims would prove durable. Others have commented that the Bill appears to lack necessary safeguards for teachers and those engaged in education who continue to teach the Christian concept of marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
The overall result, as I think you may have anticipated, is that the vast majority of members are not able to support the proposals.”