Cuba Votes To Legalize Same-Sex Marriage

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After a nationwide referendum on Sunday, Cubans are on track to approve a new Family Code which will allow same-sex marriage and afford surrogacy and adoption rights for LGBTQ+ individuals. 

After a nationwide referendum on Sunday, Cubans are on track to approve a new Family Code which will allow same-sex marriage and afford surrogacy and adoption rights for LGBTQ+ individuals. 

The code was approved by nearly 67% of votes, ABC News reports. It required approval from 50% of voters in order to pass.

The law, which also includes measures to protect the elderly and individuals against gender violence, has already been approved by the country’s Parliament. It had the support of the government, which in recent weeks launched a campaign urging voters to pass the referendum.

“Most of our people will vote in favor of the code, but it still has issues that our society as a whole does not understand,” said President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Sunday as he cast his vote at the polls. 

Despite passage of the referendum, the new code was opposed by conservative and evangelical groups. Those groups had previously blocked attempts to legalize same-sex marriage in 2018.

Homosexuality has been legal in Cuba since 1979. In 2019, a referendum vote repealed the definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman, as then written in the country’s constitution. However, same-sex marriage was not subsequently legalized. 

Cuba will now become one of 32 countries that recognize same-sex marriage. It is one of three Central American countries to recognize same-sex marriage (the others are Costa Rica and Mexico) and the only Caribbean island nation to do so.

 


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