It’s the latest defeat in the 11 year-long battle to legalize civil partnerships
The Romanian Senate rejected by majority two civil partnership bills yesterday (18 March).
Both bills proposed by pro-LGBTI parties were defeated in the Senate, Romania Insider reported.
This is the latest defeat in an 11 year battle to legalize civil partnerships in the European country.
What did the bills say?
MPs from the Save Romania Union, the Liberal Party, the Hungarians’ Union and one MP from the Social Democrat Party initiated the first bill.
While two MPs of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) proposed the second bill.
The ALDE’s bill defined civil partnerships as ‘the union of two different people, or same-sex individuals’ for the purpose ‘of setting up a shared private life and household.’
Though the senate rejected both bills, they’ll now be passed onto the Chamber of Deputies.
The chamber, the lower house of Romania’s parliament, is the deciding legislative body.
‘Society is more open minded’
However, Romanian LGBTI advocate group ACCEPT have campaigned fiercely for civil partnerships in the European country.
Teodora Ion-Rotaru of ACCEPT said: ‘The rejection of the civil partnership bills is not surprising.
‘We participated in committee hearings, where we were even not allowed to speak regarding the dire situations faced by same sex couples because they cannot access any type of legal protection in Romania.
‘Society is more open minded than the political environment, and one would expect politicians to understand that voters expect an inclusive and modern Romania.
‘Not a place frozen in time, and in post-communist prejudice. ‘
Not the first time
Despite several failed attempts, Romania does not recognize civil partnerships.
Democratic Union member Péter Eckstein-Kovács first introduced the idea in 2008.
He said the country adopted the current Family Code ‘more than fifty years ago and no lager reflected social realities.’
However, his two attempts that year to introduce the bill to the senate tanked.
Moreover, the Green Party in 2013 attempted the same, and encountered similar defeat.
In fact, their proposals incited vehement backlash from opponents of the move.
In 2014, opponents rejected the bill 298 votes to just four in favor.
Finally, 2018 saw several reform attempts from the Chamber of Deputies met similar fates.
Love not hate
LGBTI advocates have had small victories, however.
Last last year, less than 30% of Romanian citizen took part in a referendum to redefine marriage.
While the constitution defines marriage as between two ‘spouses’ the referendum sought to alter this to ‘a man and woman.’
Fortunately, the referendum’s low turnout meant it was nullified.
by Josh Milton
Source – Gay Star News