JERVIS Bay could become Australia’s top destination for same-sex marriage if changes to the Australian Capital Territory’s marriage laws succeed.
As the Bay is a part of the ACT the passage of marriage equality laws would allow same-sex couples to marry there by the end of the year.
Jervis Bay Tourism and Promotions president Melissa McManus said if the laws were successfully changed it would be nothing but beneficial to the local area.
“I definitely think that it will have a positive effect on businesses and tourism to the area,” said Ms McManus.
“Weddings are a big part of tourism to the region,” she said.
Local marriage celebrant Wendy Lenton said she had 10 weddings in Jervis Bay in the coming months and was not surprised as it is internationally renowned for its natural beauty, becoming an obvious choice to a lot of couples as a destination for their wedding.
“I’m not sure there would be a boom [in Jervis Bay weddings], but should the law be passed, people would certainly take it up as an option because it is easier to get to than Canberra,” said Ms Lenton.
“It’s just a beautiful destination, especially for beach weddings – couples love the atmosphere and relaxed nature and it makes for fabulous photographs.
“There are also so many beaches, locations and destinations within the area to choose from.
“I would be happy to do a same-sex ceremony with no hesitation if the law was passed,” she said.
The federal government has signalled it will seek legal advice on whether the ACT can sanction same-sex marriage.
The bill was greeted with a standing ovation from supporters in the Assembly’s public gallery, many of whom had waited years to see marriage equality legislation introduced in the territory.