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Cuba Announces Same-Sex Marriage Referendum

Cuba's parliament has announced a new family law which will be put to a referendum on September 25. It would legalize same-sex marriage and civil unions, as well as allow same-sex couples to adopt children.

Cuba is set to hold a referendum on its new family law in September

Cuba's parliament announced on Friday that the country will hold a referendum on the legalization of same-sex marriage and surrogate parenthood.

The referendum on the new family law is scheduled to be held on September 25.

Decision 'left in the hands of the people'

"The final decision will be left in the hands of the people," the National Assembly's secretary said.

"We are convinced that in due time, the majority of the Cuban people will endorse this revolutionary, inclusive and democratic code."

The new family code was debated on in community meetings earlier this year. Organizers said 62% of participants expressed support.

When Cuba's constitution was revised in 2019, LGBTQ activists pushed to include same-sex marriage in the new version of the document. This was ultimately withdrawn due to opposition from conservative and religious groups.

In Latin America, seven countries currently allow same-sex marriage: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Uruguay and Chile. Chile legalized same-sex marriage in March of this year.

What do we know about the law?

The new law would also offer increased protections for children, the elderly and other family members as well as greater women's rights.

Furthermore, it would allow prenuptial agreements, adoption of children by same-sex couples and surrogate pregnancies, though not for profit. It will promote the equal sharing of domestic responsibilities.

According to the new family code, parents will have "responsibility" rather than "custody" of children. They will also be required to be "respectful of the dignity and physical and mental integrity of children and adolescents."

sdi/sri (AFP, Reuters)

Courtesy: DW

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