Draft of Cuba’s new family code opens door for gay marriage

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09/16/2021

The draft of a new family code for Cuba released Wednesday proposes allowing same-sex couples to marry and adopt as well as giving children greater participation in decisions that affect them. The preliminary draft, which must be approved by Cuba’s parliament then go to a grassroots plebiscite, comes almost three years after the island’s communist government backed away from enshrining gay marriage protections in its new constitution in the face of opposition. Evangelical groups objected to the constitutional proposal to eliminate the description of marriage as a union of a man and woman, and change it to the union of “two people … with absolutely equal rights and obligations.” “We consider this version to be consistent with the constitutional text, and develop and update the various legal-family institutions in correspondence with the humanistic nature of our social process,” Justice Minister Óscar Silveira Martínez said in announcing the draft. Evangelical groups, however, are expected to object to the change in the family code draft. Both Martínez and Yamila González Ferrer, vice president of the National Union of Jurists of Cuba, emphasized that the proposed family code is much broader than an authorisation of same-sex marriage. “It protects all expressions of family diversity and the right of each person to establish a family in coherence with the constitutional principles of plurality, inclusion, and human dignity,” González said.

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