News & Politics

Uruguay: Closer to Marriage Equality

uruguay

Uruguay’s Chamber of Deputies approved marriage equality last week, if the Senate approves (and it seems like they will!), president José “Pepe” Mujica may promulgate this early in 2013.

Remember the loophole about last names I mentioned in my previous post? Well, my neighbors from Uruguay were smart and included in this project, which was based on a text by Colectivo Ovejas Negras, modifications that not only allow same-sex marriage, but also promote equality in heterosexual marriages by allowing them to choose which parent’s last name goes first when registering children (right now, like in most countries in Latin America, the father’s last name must go first) and by changing the Divorce legislation promulgated in 1912, according to which only women can decide to ask for a divorce. This was written as a measure to defend women because back then men had the economic power but now but that’s not so today. This changes would allow divorce by mutual consent and would make things much easier.

Here’s a video of the Deputies voting:

Here’s a link (in Spanish) with more info on the Law and the debate: Matrimonio igualitario: la ley y el debate.

Uruguay approved civil unions in 2007 and became the first country in Latin America to allow same-sex couples to adopt in october 2009, when the legislation about Childhood and Adolescence was modified so any civil “unioned” couple (for 4 years or more) could adopt. Since adoption was approved before marriage and because there already was a case of adoption by a lesbian couple of their kid (which one of them gave birth to), I’m guessing the legal recognition of kids of same-sex parents won’t be a big issue. Hopefully, I’ll have more good news about Uruguay soon!

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