Switzerland has become the 30th country worldwide to legalise same-sex marriage, which will come into effect on July 1, 2022.
The results of the national referendum were overwhelmingly in favour of supporting male-male and female-female marriages, with 64.1% voting yes to the ‘Marriage for all’ campaign.
“With this, all couples will in the future be treated equally before the law: all can enter into a civil marriage, with the same rights and obligations,” Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter wrote.
Later Keller-Sutter went on to say to journalists in Bern that, “Nothing has changed for male-female couples”, addressing the opposition’s arguments that same-sex marriage would undermine families based on a union between a man and a woman.
"Whoever loves each other and wants to get married will be able to do so regardless of whether it is two men, two women, or a man and a woman.” With these words, Swiss Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter announced the results of a popular referendum around #samesexmarriage.
— Megaphone (@megaphone_news) September 27, 2021
This new law will allow same-sex couples the right to marry which will, by extension, allow joint adoption rights to same-sex couples and allow lesbian couples access to regulated sperm donation and medical assistance with procreation. The law will also facilitate citizenship for same-sex spouses, putting them on equal footing with their heterosexual counterparts.
The LGBTQ+ population of the historically conservative country is thrilled to learn that none of the Swiss states had a majority against the vote.
“This is a historic day for us and for Switzerland, this is a great step forward, something we have been waiting for for years,” co-president of the Geneva Federation of LGBT Associations, Laura Russo, said at a gathering of overjoyed voters along a Geneva pedestrian street.
“This initiative was begun in 2013; we had to wait eight years for the vote to happen — and here, this is a big ‘Yes.”
Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter said on Twitter that the government would implement the decision quickly and, under current plans, the new rules can take effect on July 1.
— Eddie Du (@EddieDu5) September 27, 2021
Despite being one of the last countries of Western Europe to legalise same-sex marriage, Switzerland recognised same-sex civil partnerships all the way back in 2007. The Alpine country, with a population of 8.5 million, is overwhelmingly thrilled to now have LGBTQ+ rights that are in line with most of its neighbours.
Nicolas Dzierlatka, a Swiss voter, told ITV News that she voted “yes” despite the opposition’s campaign which focused on a child’s supposed need for both a mother and a father.
Nicolas said, “I think what’s important for children is that they are loved and respected — and I think there are children who are not respected or loved in so-called ‘hetero’ couples.”
ITV News goes on to report that the campaign of the opposition was “rife with allegations of unfair tactics, with the opposing sides decrying the ripping down of posters, LGBT hotlines getting flooded with complaints, hostile emails, shouted insults against campaigners and efforts to silence opposing views.”
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