Following in the footsteps of Germany, Australia and Chile, Austria has just legalised gay marriage!
The Austrian court argued that by having civil partnership for lesbian and gay citizens, and marriage for heterosexual couples, a division was being caused, that deemed gay people to be less entitled to the act of marriage.
Therefore, as of 2019, marriage is legal for gay couples, yet they can enter into legal partnership anytime before this also.
It can definitely be said that 2017 has been a fantastic year for same sex marriages, the act being legalised in many countries around the world. In June, Germany voted to allow the act, voting 399 votes to 226, whilst Chile also legalised gay marriage this year, alongside passing laws to allow same sex couples to adopt children.
Chile’s decision came just one week after it agreed to lift the nationwide ban on abortion.
Australia were also seen to allow same sex marriage this year, too.
The countless new laws being passed each week hopefully symbolise a move towards a more progressive and accepting society and one that will not tolerate sexual discrimination.
Helmut Graupner, representative of two female plaintiffs in court, commented on the decision, ‘today is a truly historic day, Austria is the first European country to recognise marriage equality for same-gender couples as a fundamental human right. All the other European states with marriage equality introduced it (just) the political way’.
However, the ruling did of course meet with some opposition, mainly from far right group ‘The Far Right Freedom Party’, who stated that; ‘now there is equal treatment for something that’s not equal. A marriage between women and men needs protection as only these partnerships can create children’.
Still, the same sex marriage ruling has been widely accepted and supported, with the law now apparent in 25 countries and the number hopefully set to increase.
The first country to actually legalise same sex marriage was the Netherlands in 2001, an act which hopefully the remaining countries can learn from to help the world develop in knowledge, understanding and acceptance.