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Same-sex couples have been fighting for the right to marry for years to no avail. Foto: BoBo

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Time to bestow marriage equality to same-sex couples?

United Left’s bill: Full equality between same-sex civil unions and marriage
19. January 2015 ob 20:33
Ljubljana - MMC RTV SLO

In a long struggle for same-sex marriage rights, MPs will again debate the issue. Thus far all efforts to enact same-sex marriage recognition have resulted in political compromise, but the bill has a good chance of being passed this time around.

United Left (ZL) MP Matej Tašner Vatovec tabled a ZL-sponsored bill proposing changes to the Marriage and Family Relations Act. The aim is to “change the definition of marriage from a union of one man and one woman to a union of two persons”. This would serve as a basis for extending all other rights to married same-sex couples.

The sponsors of the bill say the goal is to provide equal rights to all members of our society. “It is long overdue,” Vatovec told MMC. The sponsors of the bill claim that the bill would extend constitutional rights to all groups. The constitution provides that all have equal rights, but these rights have thus far been denied to homosexual couples.

Changes would eliminate same-sex unions
If passed, the bill would amend the four paragraphs of the Marriage and Family Relations Act that define marriage as a union of one man and one woman. The bill would simultaneously eliminate the Same-Sex Partnerships Act. If the basic requirements for a valid marriage are met, all registered couples can choose to marry and avail themselves of the full rights that come with a marriage.

The bill is modelled upon the Slovenian Family Code, which was rejected by 55 % of voters in a 2012 referendum. “In terms of same-sex rights, the bill is virtually identical to the 2012 Family Code,” Vatovec said, adding that other issues from the Family Code have yet to be addressed.

If ZL’s bill is passed, the new Family Code bill currently drafted by the government would be stripped of its ideological overtones. In 2012, most of the public focus has been on gay issues. The United Left also want homosexual couples to receive equal treatment in adoption matters.

Luka Lukič; translated by D. V.

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