Monday, December 01, 2014

Equality comes to Finland

Finland has legalised same-sex marriage, becoming the 12th European state to do so:

The Finnish parliament has narrowly approved a citizen’s initiative to legalise same-sex marriage.

Gay couples in Finland have been able to enter into registered partnerships since 2002, but until now the country was the only in the Nordic region not to allow same-sex marriage. Finland is now the 12th European state to do so.

In the vote, 105 members of parliament supported the legal amendment while 92 opposed it.

The measure will end the distinction in Finland between same-sex unions and heterosexual marriages and give such couples equal rights to adopt children and share a surname.

Northern and western Europe are now firmly pro-equality. Which means the battle will now move to central Europe - Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic. Meanwhile, former Soviet Europe is firmly bigoted, with Texan-style constitutional provisions to enforce inequality. It is going to be a long struggle to get them to recognise this fundamental human right.