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ADDED ON: 05/14/2021

Switzerland To Hold Referendum On 2020 Same-Sex Marriage Legislation

05/13/2021 | Organization for World Peace

After a lengthy parliamentary battle, the Swiss government will hold a referendum concerning legislation introduced in December 2020 recognizing same-sex marriage. Under this law, same-sex couples can enter into “registered partnerships” with some legal protection against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and sexual identity. Public support for the law was unanimously in favor of the bill with 63.1% in agreement with the change compared to the 36.9% opposing the change. However, the Swiss People’s Party (SVP), Switzerland’s largest nationalist political party, achieved its promise of enacting a referendum over the decision by obtaining 61,027 signatures from the populace, meeting the requirement that allows members of the public to vote on a referendum over any parliamentary decisions if over 50,000 signatures from the public are gathered within 100 days from the publication of any legislative act. The fate of the current legislation will be known once the Swiss government determines the date of the referendum in May. Support for the referendum is born out of an initiative involving members from the Swiss People’s Party (SVP), the Democratic Christian Party (CVP), and the Federal Democratic Union (EDU) rejecting the legitimacy of same-sex marriage with the slogan “Yes to marriage and family, no to marriage for everyone.” On the opposite side of Switzerland’s political spectrum, Operation Libero, a liberal political movement, has garnered 100,000 signatures in their petition to keep the law in place stating “it is important that people in Switzerland can get married irrespective of their sexual orientation or gender identity.” Pink Cross, an LGBT umbrella organization, has cited their poll conducted in November 2020 as evidence that Swiss citizens support the 2020 law in which 82% of voters responded with either adequate or strong approval of same-sex marriage.

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