Vietnamese lawmakers back down on giving rights to same-sex couples

A new draft of Vietnam’s marriage laws was to guarantee same-sex couples’ rights to a fair divide of shared assets but that language has now been dropped from the bill in committee

Vietnamese lawmakers back down on giving rights to same-sex couples
30 May 2014

Vietnamese LGBTI activists are disappointed that the government has backed down on plans to legally recognize the property rights of same-sex couples with a bill to rewrite the country’s marriage laws amended at the last moment to exclude them.

During a 27 May session of Vietnam’s National Assembly the Committee for Social Affairs revised the Draft Law on Marriage and Family to remove its Article 16 which would have provided some legal recognition of same-sex relationships for the first time.

It also placed language in the draft law that would not ban same-sex marriages but simply ignore them legally.

‘The State does not recognize marriage between same-sex people,’ the draft bill now states.

The move was decried by Vietnamese minority groups advocates the Institute for Studies of Society, Economics and Environment (iSEE) as going against the spirit of Vietnam’s constitution which states, ‘everyone is equal before the law. No one shall be discriminated against in political, civil, economic, cultural and social life.’

‘By not acknowledging the rights of citizens who are homosexuals, bisexuals or transgender, the Draft Law of Marriage and Family overlooks the efforts of millions of Vietnamese citizens, those who are working in all parts of the nation, in various occupations from national security to business production, from research and studying to humanity and charity, and like other Vietnamese citizens are devoted to the construction, development and protection of national prosperity,’ iSEE said in a statement.

‘They deserve to be treated equally, to be cared about and enabled to pursue freedom and happiness.’

iSEE have asked the government to reinstate Article 16 of the bill with the following language: ‘Rights and obligations toward children, property, obligations and contracts of different parties in the cohabitation relationship of same-sex couples are to be resolved by agreement of the parties; or if without any agreement, it will be settled in accordance with the provisions of the Civil Code and other relevant laws.’

‘Housework and other tasks related to the maintenance of shared life are considered as labor with income.’

iSEE called for lawmakers to produce a better bill before it is considered by the National Assembly as a whole on Tuesday.

‘This is an appropriate step in accordance with the standpoint of society, the expectation of international supporters as well as the legitimate rights and interests of millions of Vietnamese citizens who are homosexual, bisexual or transgender,’ iSEE said.

‘It also demonstrates the principle of Vietnamese National Assembly and State that legislation is for all, free from discrimination.’

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Larry Kramer feared Matt Bomer was 'too beautiful' to appear in The Normal Heart

But director Ryan Murphy convinced the playwright that Bomer 'felt the ghosts' depicted in AIDS drama
No thumbnail available

Bulgaria Court rules claim gay men are more dangerous than smoking is unlawful

The Supreme Administrative Court of Bulgaria has ruled that comments by Bulgarian film director Andrey Slabakov constitute unlawful harassment, ordering the country’s Commission for Protection against Discrimination to take action against him
No thumbnail available

Bob Newhart cancels gig at annual conference for anti-gay Catholic group Legatus

Comedian was to appear with noted anti-LGBT figures Rick Santorum and Bill Donohue
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Tory chairmen call for delay on gay marriage vote

Senior local Conservatives are urging the UK prime minister to delay any parliamentary decision on gay marriage until after the next election
No thumbnail available

Jubilant same-sex couples rush to get married in Utah in 'celebration of love and joy'

Ruling by federal judge clears way but state's attorney general has filed to halt ceremomies pending an appeal
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Greg Louganis documentary up for project of the month

Documentary of gay Olympic champion Greg Louganis entered in Indiewire's project of the month contest
No thumbnail available

Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy share a sweet impromptu kiss before TV critics

Stars of The Following smooch when asked about their chemistry
No thumbnail available

Australia promotes lesbian health

Tanya Plibersek, the Australian Federal Health Minister, confirmed the government’s support of lesbian and same-sex attracted women’s (SSAW) health