Same-sex Taiwanese couples and families have celebrated the country’s same-sex marriage bill by posting romantic photos of themselves.
Thousands of people have commented under the premier’s Wednesday (20 February) Facebook post announcing cabinet had drafted a same-sex marriage bill.
Premier Su Tseng Chang introduced the bill in a video. ‘I want to say to fellow countrymen, whether you are heterosexual or gay, we are all in the same country, we all together live in this land’ he said.
‘I sincerely expect everyone to be inclusive and accept each other’s difference, and to be good and to treat each other well’.
Posting a family photo, Facebook user Jovi Wu wrote: ‘Thank you for your hard work.’
‘Finally, we have the opportunity to be a real family’ she also wrote.
It gathered 12,000 likes.
Among many congratulations in the replies was one from premier Su. ‘I wish you all happiness,’ he wrote.
Hundreds of other couples shared their photos in response to the announcement.
Almost-equal rights in Taiwan
LGBTI rights advocates in Taiwan on Thursday accepted the government’s marriage bill as a compromise but said it fell short of genuine marriage equality.
The compromise bill comes after a devastating referendum loss in November 2018. Taiwan voters opted for a separate law to legalize same-sex unions rather than to change the Civil Code.
Following the results, conservative groups have been lobbying lawmakers to enact a ‘cohabitation’ or ‘partnership’ law to afford same-sex couples similar rights as marriage. Rights activists denounced this as failing to give genuine equality.
Coordinator of the Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan, Jennifer Lu, told Gay Star News the bill was ‘a very clever way’ to move forward.
She said it was not ‘perfect’ but could be acceptable as long as it had the structure of marriage.
She said the LGBTI community suffered trauma from the referendum and was still taking time to heal.
‘Many LGBT people don’t have the resources to face that battle again in their lifetime’ she said.