Last edited: February 14, 2005

Gay Group Sex Ban Faces Repeal in Scotland

Datalounge, May 1, 2001

EDINBURGH, Scotland — Plans in the Scottish Parliament to repeal a gay-specific ban on group sex ran into opposition, after a Tory MSP announced he will fight the move, the BBC reports.

Conservative Phil Gallie told fellow lawakers he intends to press for a Scottish Parliament vote on outlawing all group sex — both gay and straight — when the legislation comes before Scottish lawmakers for the final vote.

The move to repeal the law is credited to a ruling made by European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), which specifies equal treatment under the law for gay men and lesbians in member countries. Formal adoption of the Convention is now at its committee stage in the Scottish Parliament.

The proposed bill makes several changes to Scottish law which lawmakers say are necessary for compliance with the ECHR, including a measure that allows adult gay men to engage in group sex in private without being liable to prosecution.

"What people get up to behind their own doors is up to them," the BBC quotes Gallie, the Conservative MSP for South of Scotland region. "I don’t want to put cameras behind every bedroom door. But I want to make sure that the Government doesn’t condone it.

"If people do it, that’s their affair, but the Government should not need to legislate. I don’t think the Government should be legislating in this way," Gallie insisted.

The Labour Party-dominated government frames the issue in very different terms. An Executive spokesman told the BBC, "The Executive felt it was right there should not be discrimination of any kind, and decided remove the law on group sex among people of the same sex.

"It’s a matter of fairness and equity."

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