has recognized same-sex marriage
, as of November 5, 2004.
On September 27, 2004, Saskatchewan Justice Minister Frank Quennell
told CBC News
that neither he nor the province will take a stand on the issue of same-sex marriage.
Five same-sex couples appeared before Justice Donna Wilson on 3 November 2004, asking for a judgment requiring marriage licence issuers appointed by the provincial government to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples. Neither the federal nor provincial government challenged the suit.
"Greg Walen, lawyer for one of the couples, had filed a statement of claim seeking a declaratory judgment that the common-law definition of marriage be changed to include the wording 'two people to the exclusion of others,' rather than 'two people of the opposite sex.'"
On 5 November 2004, Justice Wilson ruled that the common-law opposite-sex definition of marriage violated the equality rights of same-sex couples under the Charter rights
, and that "the common-law definition of marriage for civil purposes is declared to be 'the lawful union of two persons to the exclusion of all others.'"
The ruling was immediately brought into question in 2005. Orville Nichols, a 30-year marriage commissioner and devout Baptist, refused to marry a gay couple because it conflicted with his religious beliefs.<ref... Read More