200,000 marchers took to the streets of Rome on Saturday to call for Italian lawmakers to finally pass legislation to create civil unions for same-sex couples.
Several civil union bills have been introduced in the Italian Parliament over the last two decades but none has been passed despite a 2010 Italian Constitutional Court ruling that committed same-sex relationships are a ‘legitimate social formation, similar to and deserving homogeneous treatment as marriage.’
2014 marks the 20th year of Rome Pride and this year the march was opened by the mayor of Rome, Ignazio Marino, who promised to create a city level registry of civil unions while lawmakers refused to act at a national level.
‘We need to put pressure on parliament so Italy can overcome the shame of lagging behind the rest of the European Union,’ Marino said, according to The Local.
Polling has shown a majority of Italians support civil unions for same-sex couples but the Catholic Church remains opposed.