General News

Switzerland legalises same-sex marriage

Rachel Badham December 21, 2020

Switzerland has become the 29th country to legalise same-sex marriage after lawmakers voted in support of the new regulations on Friday December 18. Switzerland was lagging behind other European countries in terms of LGBTQ+ rights; ILGA Europe, an advocacy group for the LGBTQ+ community, has ranked it as the 23rd most equal country in the continent, which is considerably lower than its neighbouring countries. It has an equality rating of 36% which is below the European average of 48%. 

Marriage For All, a equality campaign, was launched in 2013 to improve rights for the Swiss LGBTQ+ community. In response to the new marriage legislation, the group said:  “This is not only a milestone in the fight for the rights of the Swiss LGBTQ+ population, but also an important victory for their dignity, their acceptance and their inclusion in society.”

According to Reuters, parliament also passed a bill on Friday which will allow trans people to change their gender on identity documents by making a declaration at civil registry offices. This makes Switzerland the eighth European country to allow trans people to legally change gender without the involvement of a doctor or a court. In addition, the new set of laws will facilitate lesbian couple’s access to sperm donates and co-adoption rights, meaning it is a considerable step forward for the country’s LGBTQ+ community.