Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Italy and the Freedom to Marry

I was recently sent details about the campaign to ensure the freedom to marry for same-sex couples in Italy. The campaign website states: 'On 23rd March the Italian Constitutional Court will decide whether several articles of the Civil Code (art. 93, 96, 98, 107, 108, 143, 143-bis, and 156-bis) restricting civil marriage to “husband and wife” rather than “spouses” discriminate against same-sex couples, and infringe upon the principles of equality and non-discrimination protected by the Constitution.

Legally speaking in Italy there is neither a legal “definition” of marriage nor an express restriction on the marriage of same-sex couples. Moreover a requirement that the parties must be of opposite sex is not specified.

Therefore, during 2007 two Italian associations, Certi Diritti and Rete Lenford, jointly launched the national campaign called Affermazione Civile (Civil Affirmation). The aim of the campaign is to bring an end to the exclusion of committed same-sex couples from civil marriage.

Gay people have the same mix of reasons as non-gay people for wanting the freedom to marry, and the law should not discriminate against committed couples or deny them civil marriage licenses with the same responsibilities, same rules, and same respect.'

They've launched a petition, and full details can be viewed here.

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