Parliament fails to pass same-sex partnership proposal

Submitted by Iniciativa Inakost

Parliament has rejected a proposal to introduce same-sex registered partnerships. It was put forward by the opposition Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party. The draft was backed by only 14 MPs. Though SaS has 11 seats in parliament, it became clear during the vote that only six of its MPs had backed the suggestion, the TASR newswire reported.

The draft law contained several measures supporting cohabitation of same-sex couples. Partners would, for example, have been able to learn about each other’s health conditions, represent each other in court, or become one of the first heirs in the case of the other partner’s death.

The proposal was backed by the authors of the bill, Martin Poliačik and Lucia Nicholsonová, as well as fellow SaS MPs Martin Chren, Daniel Krajcer, Juraj Miškov and Peter Osuský. Also Miroslav Beblavý, Lucia Žitňanská and Magda Vášáryová from the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ), Ján Mičovský, Peter Pollák, Mikuláš Huba and Jozef Viskupič from the Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OĽaNO) movement, and Rudolf Chmel of Most-Híd supported the proposal.

As many as 95 percent of MPs have retrograde opinions, Nicholsonová said after the vote.
“I can’t believe that such retrograde opinions are in the majority among the public,” she said, as quoted by TASR. “I believe that there will come a time when we will be able to discuss such a ‘supernormal’ topic here [in Slovakia].”

On the other hand, the failure to pass the proposal was welcomed by the civic initiative Something Doesn’t Fit Here, which instead called for the introduction of a constitutional law defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman.

The initiative also expressed concerns over possible future developments concerning the issue since the MPs in question plan to re-introduce their suggestion in two years.
“The governing Smer party did not provide an unambiguous stance, and its voting [on Tuesday] was only based on reasoning that Slovakia is currently facing other problems, and that the bill would not receive Smer’s backing at the moment, therefore,” said Patrik Daniška, spokesperson for the initiative, as quoted by TASR. “Another disquieting initiative is the recent setting up of a committee for the protection of rights of LGBTI people by the government.”

Source: Slovak Spectator/TASR, 7.11.2012

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