Written evidence from Mr Roy White [HAB0158]
If a couple wish to have the security and legal benefits conferred by marriage, they have an already existing method – get married.
Marriage is shown by all the statistics to be a far better way of managing a relationship and the raising of children. A commitment is made and, in return for said commitment, certain legal benefits accrue.
Couples who want such benefits without making this commitment want their cake and eat it. Such an arrangement would demean and devalue marriage. Instead of working hard to reduce the importance of marriage, with no-fault divorce, the government should be strengthening marriage, by for instance, improving the tax laws to cease the penalization that some married couple now suffer from.
Not every marriage works, but only 15% of children of married couples endure a split-up by their parents, whereas more than 50% of children of co-habiting couples have that trauma to face.
Giving co-habiting couples the same rights as married couples is not justice or equality, it is treating inherently different things in the same way, and is unnecessary and totally unjustified.