Will Gay Marriage Come To Cuba?
While marriage equality is currently illegal in Cuba, it may not stay that way for long. At this year’s Pride festival in May, activists staged a symbolic mass gay wedding, and one of Cuba’s leading LGBTQ activists is Mariela Castro, daughter of President Raul Castro (and niece of Cuba’s previous long-term leader, Fidel Castro). She is also the director of the Cuban National Center for Sex Education in Havana (or CENESEX), and is a sitting member of Cuba’s parliament, the National Assembly of People’s Power.
Ms. Castro says her father also supports same-sex marriage, however a bill submitted to Parliament to make it legal has been stalled since 2014. However, a new campaign, “Nosotros también amamos” (“We Also Love”), which takes advantage of the processes (link in Spanish) laid out by the Cuban Constitution for citizens to propose legislation.
According to Cuban law, issues may be brought to legislation via working their way up from neighborhood assemblies to the municipal level, from there to the provincial level, finally up to the national level. It is hoped that the issue can move forward in Parliament with the backing of the citizenry combined with CENESEX and Ms. Castro’s efforts.
Nosotros también amamos has been organized by the LGBTQ organization La Corriente Martiana, but has been endorsed by two other LGBTQ organizations, the Cuban Foundation for LGBT Rights and the social media group Shui Tuix.
The campaign officially begins on December 1, and the three groups are distributing pamphlets with directions on bringing this issue before the different levels of government, and the proposal is available online at Facebook (link in Spanish).