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30,000 Rally in Support as Taiwan Advances Same-Sex Marriage Legislation

Today, as Taiwan’s parliament discussed legislation to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide, activists held a second rally in support of the measure. About 30,000 pro-marriage activists reportedly gathered outside of the parliament building alongside an estimated 4,000 anti-marriage activists who tried to climb the building gates, demanding entry to delay discussion.

This second rally follows another such rally earlier this November in which 20,000 activists gathered as the parliament debated the measure. An additional 250,000 LGBT rights supporters gathered in early December to attend a benefit concert in support of marriage equality.

While polls show public opinion as split 46% to 45% in favor of and against same-sex marriage, support among parliament members hovers around an estimated 40% to 60% with many still undecided. Today, the parliament’s judiciary committee approved the legislative language and had a formal reading. The language now heads to party caucus members for further negotiations. Continued discussion is expected to take place in April or May 2017.

Concurrently, the Taipei City Council in Taiwan voted today to allow same-sex couples to apply for partnership certificates. While the certificates do not grant same-sex couples all the same rights as different-sex married couples, they do allow same-sex couples to sign medical consent forms and apply for family care leave. The vote makes Taipei the third Taiwanese city alongside Taichung and Kaohsiung to offer such certificates.

(featured image via StuartChen-Hayes陳海思鐸)