Now Reading
Romania to hold referendum that would rule out hopes for same-sex marriage

Romania to hold referendum that would rule out hopes for same-sex marriage

A petition to ban gay marriage has been signed nearly 3 million times referendum

Romania’s ruling Social Democratic Party hope to introduce a referendum, effectively ruling out hopes for same-sex marriage.

The party president Liviu Dragnea aims to introduce the referendum this Autumn.

It aims to restrict the constitutional definition of marriage. This would then stop any proposed same-sex marriage reform dead in its tracks.

Vlad Viski, president of Romanian LGBTI activist group MozaiQ Association told Gay Star News: ‘LGBTI people in Romania are going through difficult times.’

He believes since homosexuality was decriminalized in Romania 16 years ago, no legislation has been passed to protect LGBTI citizens.

Liviu Dragnea, leader of Romania's Social Democrats, wants the referendum to be delayed
Liviu Dragnea, leader of Romania’s Social Democrats

Viski said: ‘Now, we see a wave of hatred directed at LGBTI people, with support from the Orthodox church and American-led neo-protestant groups.

‘It is unacceptable for a party who claims European and social-democratic values to lead the battle to restrict the rights of LGBTI people,’ he said.

The church plays a pivotal role in political life in Romania. Official Romanian Orthodox church teaching on homosexuality states ‘there is no such thing as tolerance.’

It continues: ‘The Church rejects unclean love, in order to promote and protect holy love.’

Referendum: ‘Romania is shifting towards illiberalism’

A group called the Coalition for the Family raised about 3 million signatures as an initiative to ban same-sex marriages.

In July 2016, the Romanian Constitutional Court gave the green light for the initiative to move to the Parliament.

But Viski argues this move is unconstitutional: ‘Moreover, the parliamentary procedure to change the Constitution was deemed unconstitutional by the Constitutional Court of Romania.

‘This just shows that Romania is shifting towards illiberalism.

LGBTI people held protest against Romania's Constitutional Court decision
LGBTI people held protest against Romania’s Constitutional Court decision

‘The conservatives’ agenda does not only target LGBTI people, which means in the nearby future the reproductive rights of women or other human rights could be in jeopardy,’ he said.

The Coalition for the Family is a collection of about 30 Romanian non-government organizations. It seeks to promote traditional families, as well as the anti-abortion movement.

It also supports cancelling subsidies for contraception and elective abortion. As well as the forcing of parents of minors to have counseling if they want to divorce.