Words by Amy Packham
In 2022, it's shocking that some countries still haven’t legalised same-sex marriage. Still, there are countries out there where that is the case - the good news is that many of them are catching up.
It may have taken them a hot minute to get here, but here they are nevertheless.
A huge win for the historically Catholic country, the bill to allow same-sex couples to not only marry but also adopt was supported by President Sebastián Piñera.
The bill was stalled by the Chilean congress for four years, since 2017, after it was initially pushed for by former left-leaning President Michelle Bachelet.
But, eventually, the bill was passed on 7 December 2021 and it took effect 90 days later on 10 March 2022.
The human rights advocacy organisation Movilh (also known as the Homosexual Integration and Liberation Movement or, in Spanish, the Movimiento de Integración y Liberación Homosexual), campaigned for the Chilean government to legalise gay marriage, as well as for their initial anti-discrimination law.
Same-sex marriage in Switzerland has been legal since 1st July 2022, after passing through parliament in December 2020. Though ‘registered partnerships’ were available for same-sex couples starting in 2007, after a 2005 referendum, they didn’t afford all the same rights that heterosexual couples were getting in their marriage.
By opening up marriage, same-sex couples who choose to marry will now have the same rights as heterosexual couples who are married, including recieving your partner’s pension after they have passed away.
Registered partnerships have been done away with altogether now that marriage has been opened up, and same-sex couples who were in a registered partnership are now able to transition into a marriage.
Slovenia legalised gay marriage on 8th July 2022, making history as the first Eastern European country to do so.
Slovenia has a long history of attempting to legalise same-sex marriage and partnerships over the last 20 years, with registered partnerships for same-sex couples becoming legal in 2005. However, the rights that came with these partnerships were very limited, and didn’t include things like inheriting property.
These registered partnerships were eventually converted into civil partnerships in 2016, which afforded same-sex couples more rights, but still weren’t the same as marriage.
In 2022, the Constitutional Court of Slovenia ruled that the ban on same-sex marriage violated the Consitution of Slovenia and gave the Slovenian Parliament six months to amend it - which they did!
Cuba has not only legalised same-sex marriage in 2022, but has also given lots of other rights to minorities, such as women, in one go. This new ‘family code’ means that same-sex couples can also adopt children together, which is a huge step forward.
The referendum that led to same-sex marriage being legalised showed a huge landslide victory; when 94% of the votes were counted 3,936,790 had voted in favour of the law, and 1,950,090 against.
While this won’t take effect until 2023, Andorra legalised same-sex marriage in 2022. Since 2014, Andorra has had civil unions available for same-sex and heterosexual couples which afford those couples all the same rights as those who are married, including the ability to adopt.
Not only this, but a law banning same-sex sexual activity was abolished in 1791. Pretty awesome, right?