(CMR) The Cayman Islands' first couples to be registered under the new Civil Partnership Law are Samantha Louise Erksine and Alice Hillman Lopez who proudly collected their certificate on Thursday at Simply Weddings in The Chestnut Centre off Smith Road. They registered on October 8.
The same-sex couple got married three years ago in the United Kingdom but have now had their union formally recognized in the Cayman Islands by obtaining their Recognition of Overseas Relationship certificate from Joy Basdeo.
The pair met in early 2014 while both worked in the tourism sector but waited until some time later to pursue a relationship. They shared that they enjoyed a fun dance at O'Bar Lounge and were anxious to get to know each other more.
After their first date, Alice shared “we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, we moved in to live together.”
The happy couple wasted no time moving in together, getting married, and have since started a family. They traveled to the UK to get married three years after they met. They were supported by a full complement of loved ones who traveled overseas to celebrate their nuptials with them.
They are now pleased to be able to have their marriage recognized by the Government of the Cayman Islands.
They share an amazing three-year-old son together.
Last month the regulations for the implementation of the Civil Partnership Law took effect after Governor Maryn Roper exercised his constitutional powers. The controversial law was only passed after the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly failed to do so in an earlier sitting of the house.
The couple recognizes and credits the efforts of Chantel Day and Vickie Bodden Bush for paving the way for this to even happen. The Privy Council is still set to rule on the matter in February 2021.
Samantha and Alice were the ones first recognized and registered civil partnership couples. However, there is another couple that registered on the 24th that would be considered “the first local couple to enter a civil union in Cayman”. This couple who wishes to remain anonymous has not registered or gotten married outside of the jurisdiction.
Joy Basdeo MBE, JP, received a new Civil Registrar of Civil Partnerships earlier in October. Here she is receiving her letter of appointment from the Registrar General, Cindy Jefferson-Bulgin: