Rodriguez v Minister of Housing of The Government and Another: PC 14 Dec 2009

Gibraltar – The claimant challenged a public housing allocation policy which gave preference to married couples and parents of children, excluding same sex and infertile couples.
Held: The aim of discouraging homosexual relationships is equally impermissible under sections 7(1) and 14 of the Constitution of Gibraltar. The suggested aims are incoherent and the means employed are not rationally connected to those aims. The appellant is entitled to a declaration that she has been treated in a discriminatory manner, in contravention of her rights under sections 7 and 14 of the Constitution.
This was not direct discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation, because other unmarried couples suffered the same disadvantage. But it was more severe than most cases of indirect discrimination, because the criterion was one which the couple would never be able to meet: ‘Thus it is a form of indirect discrimination which comes as close as it can to direct discrimination’


Lord Phillips, Lady Hale, Lord Collins, Sir Jonathan Parker, Sir Henry Brooke


[2009] UKPC 52, [2010] UKHRR 144, 28 BHRC 189




CitedSalgueiro Da Silva Mouta v Portugal ECHR 21-Dec-1999
There was a difference in treatment between the applicant and a comparator based on the applicant’s sexual orientation, a concept which is undoubtedly covered by Article 14. The list set out in this provision is of an indicative nature and is not . .
CitedKorelc v Slovenia ECHR 12-May-2009
‘the Court reiterates that according to its established case law discrimination means treating differently, without an objective and reasonable justification, persons in relevantly similar situations. . . Such a difference of treatment is . .
CitedBurden and Burden v The United Kingdom ECHR 29-Apr-2008
(Grand Chamber) The claimants were sisters who had lived together all their lives. They complained of discrimination in their treatment under the Inheritance Tax system as opposed to the treatment of a same sex couple living in a sexual . .
CitedThlimmenos v Greece ECHR 6-Apr-2000
(Grand Chamber) The applicant was a Jehovah’s Witness who had been convicted of insubordination under the Military Criminal Code for refusing to wear a military uniform at a time of general mobilisation. He was subsequently refused appointment as a . .
CitedRegina v Special Adjudicator ex parte Ullah; Regina v Secretary of State for the Home Department HL 17-Jun-2004
The applicants had had their requests for asylum refused. They complained that if they were removed from the UK, their article 3 rights would be infringed. If they were returned to Pakistan or Vietnam they would be persecuted for their religious . .
CitedCerisola (A Child) v Attorney General for Gibraltar PC 6-Mar-2008
(Gibraltar) The constitutional protection against discriminatory treatment is free standing, and is not limited to matters of employment. . .
CitedCarson, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions; Reynolds v Same HL 26-May-2005
One claimant said that as a foreign resident pensioner, she had been excluded from the annual uprating of state retirement pension, and that this was an infringement of her human rights. Another complained at the lower levels of job-seeker’s . .
CitedDH v Czech Repiublic ECHR 7-Feb-2006
The claimants, 18 Roma children complained, saying that they had automatically been placed in schools for children with special needs by virtue of their racial origin. . .
CitedSerife Yigit v Turkey ECHR 20-Jan-2005
A complaint as to the privileging of civil over religious marriages in Turkey was found admissible.
‘ the essential object of Article 8 is to protect the individual against arbitrary interference by the public authorities. There may in addition . .
CitedEB v France ECHR 14-Mar-2007
A homosexual woman complained that she had not been allowed to adopt a child. Her application was rejected by the French administrative court on grounds based substantially upon her sexual orientation.
Held: The provision was an unlawful . .
CitedSecretary of State for Work and Pensions v M HL 8-Mar-2006
The respondent’s child lived with the estranged father for most of each week. She was obliged to contribute child support. She now lived with a woman, and complained that because her relationship was homosexual, she had been asked to pay more than . .
CitedLindsay v United Kingdom ECHR 1986
The position of married couples is not comparable with the position of unmarried couples, so that differences in treatment between them do not amount to discrimination within the meaning of article 14 of the convention. . .
CitedPM v The United Kingdom ECHR 19-Jul-2005
A father complained that tax deductions which were granted to married fathers but not to unmarried fathers were discriminatory. He had paid maintenance for his daughter, but was not allowed to set the payments off against his income tax in the way . .
CitedShackell v United Kingdom ECHR 27-Apr-2000
The court held inadmissible a claim by an unmarried woman to widow’s benefit. The parties having chosen not to marry, they could not complain of not having the legal benefits of a marriage. The promotion of marriage by way of limited benefits for . .
CitedGhaidan v Godin-Mendoza HL 21-Jun-2004
Same Sex Partner Entitled to tenancy Succession
The protected tenant had died. His same-sex partner sought a statutory inheritance of the tenancy.
Held: His appeal succeeded. The Fitzpatrick case referred to the position before the 1998 Act: ‘Discriminatory law undermines the rule of law . .
CitedMcMichael v United Kingdom ECHR 2-Mar-1995
In the course of care proceedings, medical and social services’ reports were disclosed to the courts, but not to the parents involved.
Held: The courts’ failure to show reports to the parents in care proceedings was a breach of the Convention. . .
CitedKarner v Austria ECHR 24-Jul-2003
A surviving same-sex partner sought a right of succession to a tenancy (of their previously shared flat). Interveners ‘pointed out that a growing number of national courts in European and other democratic societies require equal treatment of . .
CitedGhaidan v Godin-Mendoza CA 5-Nov-2002
The applicant sought to succeed to the tenancy of his deceased homosexual partner as his partner rather than as a member of his family.
Held: A court is bound by any decision within the normal hierachy of domestic authority as to the meaning . .

Cited by:

CitedBull and Another v Hall and Another SC 27-Nov-2013
The court was asked ‘Is it lawful for a Christian hotel keeper, who sincerely believes that sexual relations outside marriage are sinful, to refuse a double-bedded room to a same sex couple?’ The defendants (Mr and Mrs Bull) appealed against a . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Commonwealth, Human Rights, Housing, Constitutional, Discrimination

Updated: 11 August 2022; Ref: scu.384074