Through The Years
What's changed since the start of the millennium?
Sexual Offences (Ammendment) Act 2001 (Equal age of consent)
- The age of consent had been lowered from 21 to 18, but was still higher than heterosexuals. Legislation in 2001 equalled all consent to age 16.
Adoption and Children Act (2002)
- Same sex couples were permitted to jointly adopt for the first time.
Repeal of Section 28
- At last schools are free to talk about homosexuality and tackle homophobic bullying.
Hate Crime Act 2003
- Including sexual orientation in the hate crime laws helped protect gay men who cruise or cottage as well as those who kiss or hold hands in public.
Sexual Offences Act 2003
- Removed the anti-gay crime of gross indecency.
Employment Equality Regulations 2003
- Until the regulations were implemented, there was no specific protection for LGB (lesbian, gay and bisexual) employees at all.
Civil Partnership Act 2004
- Civil partnership brought the option of joint responsibility for children as well as providing a legally recognised relationship between same sex couples.
- Employers must now offer you and your civil partner all the benefits married couples get.
Equality Act 2006
- Forced religious adoption agencies to accept same sex couples.
- LGB youths can no longer be declined help and advice from charities, youth organisations and even schools.
M. Castle-Woodhams, October 2007