Colombia grants gay couples right to express affection publicly

Ruling comes after two gay men were escorted out of a Cali mall for kissing in public

Colombia grants gay couples right to express affection publicly
27 May 2012

Colombia’s constitutional court has ruled the government cannot restrict gay couples’ right to express affection in public.

The ruling comes after two men were forced to leave a Cali mall when a security guard found them kissing in public.

The court decided the incident was in violation of the couple’s human rights.

The judge stated in his ruling the security guard’s actions showed ‘discrimination that only affected gay couples.’

Colombia recently made international headlines after a gay American dad won a custody battle to take his legally adopted sons out of the country.

The New York Times journalist sued the Colombian Institute of Family Welfare (ICBF) for revoking his two sons’ visas after they found out he was gay.

The court ruled the ICBF’s decision to separate the two boys from their legal guardian posed a greater risk to the emotional stability of the children.

Homosexuality was decriminalised in Colombia in 1980, and between 2007 and 2008 three rulings gave gay couples the same pension, social security and property rights as heterosexual couples.

According to a 2002 report by the Home Office of the United Kingdom, it stated ‘it is not against Colombian law to be homosexual, but a considerable amount of public ill-will exists, as in most Latin American countries where a machismo attitude is widespread.’ 

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