LOVE WINS: Austria Has Finally Legalised Marriage Equality

LOVE WINS: Austria Has Finally Legalised Marriage Equality

Austria just became the latest nation to vote in favor of same-sex marriage.

In a statement, the court said: 'The Constitutional Court nullified with a decision on December 4, 2017 the legal regulation that until now prevented such couples from marrying'.

Austria's highest court ruled Tuesday to fully legalize marriage equality by 2019 after declaring the law restricting LGBTQ partnership to civil unions discriminatory.

Austria will soon join the 15 countries other in western Europe with legalized marriage equality including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

The case was brought by two women who have a registered partnership but wanted to get married.

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The court gave the government and parliament until January 1, 2019, to agree on legislation allowing same-sex couples to enter civil marriage.

In 2010, Austria adopted a law on registered partnership, applicable only to same-sex couples.

The Constitutional Court sided with two women who complained they were refused permission to marry by authorities in the capital Vienna. However, in the state's laws on marriage it had been explicitly stated that only two people of the opposite sex could marry. The conservative People's Party stated [Reuters report] it will accept the ruling while the far-right Freedom Party criticized the ruling.

The court's ruling added: "The resulting discriminatory effect is seen in the fact that through the different title of the family status, people living in same-sex partnerships have to disclose their sexual orientation even in situations in which it is not, and must not be, relevant and. are highly likely to be discriminated against".

But many other European countries in the formerly Communist east - including Bulgaria, Poland, Romania and Slovakia - still deny homosexuals the right to enter into any legally recognized union.

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