Malta agrees to protect gay and trans people

Politicians reach cross-party agreement on LGBTI change to Constitution as the country also gets ready to pass same-sex civil unions

Malta agrees to protect gay and trans people
29 October 2013

The government and opposition in Malta have agreed to change the country’s Constitution to protect LGBTI people.

The decision comes as the politicians prepare to vote for lesbian and gay civil unions, offering similar rights and responsibilities to marriage, which also have cross-party support.

The civil unions legislation is expected to pass as early as this week. But the constitutional changes may take a little longer.

Opposition Member of Parliament (MP) Claudette Buttigieg has tabled a private members bill to change the Constitution so people are protected from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

But the government Labour Party has said gender identity should also be added, protecting transgender and intersex people too.

Civil rights minister Helena Dalli said: ‘Categorizing gender identity under sexual orientation is not accurate and therefore it is important to make a distinction and introduce the amendment.’

The proposal to include gender identity has now been backed by the opposition Nationalist Party, reports Malta Today.

Buttigieg said: ‘Let’s avoid political bickering over such matters which do not benefit the people or Parliament. People out there have high expectations and we should deliver.’

The Mediterranean island nation of Malta, Gozo and Comino has a population of over 450,000 and appears keen to keep up with other European Union members on LGBTI issues. The changes are also likely to benefit the country’s important tourism industry.

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Fifty years later a fighter's death continues to haunt

The Emile Griffith and Benny Paret fight still shocks 50 years later
No thumbnail available

Hug chair takes the weight out of cuddles

Award-winning chair allows extra time for embracing
No thumbnail available

Gays sacrifice Pride to come to rescue of Balkan flood victims

LGBTI campaigners in Serbia cancelled IDAHO and Pride Week to volunteer for flood relief work
No thumbnail available

Sandra Bernhard officiates gay wedding ceremony

Lesbian comic said she was so 'inspired' after hosting the event for the New York gay power couple
'Bi-curious' man choked pensioner, tied him up and robbed him

'Bi-curious' man choked pensioner, tied him up and robbed him

Frank Shannon unleashed: ‘Explosion of inexplicable violence’ on a 73-year-old man in Merseyside
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Civil Unions now taking place in Hawaii and Delaware

There are now five states in the U.S. where such same-sex unions are legal
No thumbnail available

American soccer star Landon Donovan says league is ready for openly gay player - now

He and LA Galaxy teammates have been practicing with Robbie Rogers
No thumbnail available

Billionaire funding new Australian political party promises free vote on gay marriage

Mineral resources sector billionaire Clive Palmer has promised that his center-right Palmer United Party’s MPs will be allowed to vote with their consciences on same-sex marriage if elected to parliament
No thumbnail available

Ellen DeGeneres and Rebel Wilson perform rap song together

Talk show host and Pitch Perfect star thrill audience with Salt-N-Pepa’s Shoop