Summary of Recommendations

Recommendation 1: 

That the Expert Panel on Religious Freedom support all the recommendations of the Coalition of Celebrant Associations (CoCA) Inc Submission on intersections between the enjoyment of the freedom of  religion and other human rights.

Recommendation 1A:

That the definition of marriage to be “the union of a two adult people to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life."

Recommendation 2:

That the current exemptions for religious celebrants (which cover age, race, disability as well as sex/gender) not to be extended to civil celebrants and that no exemptions be given on the basis of conscience for any marriage celebrant.

Recommendation 3:

That Marriage Act be reviewed and updated to ensure that the Marriage Act 
  1.   describes Subdivision C as Civil Marriage Celebrants in line with Subdivision D being described as Religious  Marriage Celebrants, and that 

  2. Section 39G (d) clarified as to “ whether the celebrant is a civil or religious marriage celebrant”.
Recommendation 4:

That there be an independent review of the Commonwealth Marriage Celebrant Program to assess performance against the intentions of the Marriage Amendment Act 2002.

Recommendation 5:

That there be a review of the cost recovery arrangements currently applicable under the Marriage Act to ensure regulation and cost recovery practices are fair and equitable to all marriage celebrants and /or to all marrying couples.

Recommendation 6: 

That a fine, equivalent to the cost of the application to be a marriage celebrant, replace the automatic de-registration for first default only on the non-payment of the annual fee by a Commonwealth authorised marriage celebrant.