The third reading of the Equality Bill took place in the House of Lords yesterday (see Hansard for the full transcript).  The Bill has now been passed and returned to the Commons with amendments.  The Government are hoping for Royal Assent before the General Election.

Of particular note is the debate as to what could potentially amount to a philosophical belief in relation to the withdrawal of the amendment to the definition which would have clarified that cults are not a philosophical belief.  ‘Shock’ was expressed at the length of the Code of Practice !

Also of note is the agreed amendment enabling civil partnerships to take place in religious premises.