If everything goes as planned, statistics on cohabiting couples of different sex could be estimated from this new information. In , the Court issued a judgment in the Oliari case, where three same-sex couples had complained that they had no option to obtain legal recognition of their relationship in Italy, either through marriage or a registered partnership. The Committee recommends the State party to regulate the rights and obligations of unmarried cohabiting couples of the opposite sex in order to provide protection with regard to the provision of maintenance and the distribution of property after the cessation of cohabitation. States should promote respect for lesbian, gay and bisexual persons and combat discrimination based on sexual orientation through human rights education and awareness-raising campaigns. My opinion is that genuine commitment to full equality would at least require states to seriously consider opening up civil marriage to same-sex couples.
Like marriage, a registered partnership brings rights and obligations to the relationship of committed couples. And what about same-sex civil marriage? Before that, in , demonstrations and counter-demonstrations polarised French society during parliamentary debates on same-sex marriage. Stable same-sex couples also have no access to tax advantages provided by the state to other couples. Couples of the same sex have been able to marry since 1 April Indeed, more often than not, registered partnerships offer a pared-down selection of rights, leaving aside more controversial issues such as adoption of children or medically assisted procreation. This has been a bottom-up development and not something imposed by regional organisations and courts. In December , a same-sex marriage referendum in Slovenia failed. There are arguments in favour of providing access to civil marriage to same-sex couples. We've helped a lot of couples by taking sex out of some deep, dark dungeon. Why don't you go home, watch a couple episodes of Sex and the City and shake this whole thing off. All states should ensure that legislation exists to provide registered same-sex couples with the same rights and benefits as married or registered different-sex couples, for example in the areas of social security, taxes, employment and pension benefits, freedom of movement, family reunification, parental rights and inheritance. My opinion is that genuine commitment to full equality would at least require states to seriously consider opening up civil marriage to same-sex couples. It was for states parties to the ECHR to decide how to regulate access to marriage. It starts from the premise that all couples, regardless of sex, are the same and are entitled to the same protection in respect of positive benefits. If everything goes as planned, statistics on cohabiting couples of different sex could be estimated from this new information. International human rights law currently does not create an obligation on states to allow same-sex couples to marry. The recent jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights the Court or ECtHR gives solid ground for recognising the existing needs of stable same-sex couples, who must be able to enjoy the same rights as stable different-sex couples. Polls show that public opinion in many European countries is increasingly in favour of recognising the rights of same-sex couples -- much more so than politicians sometimes seem to believe. Legal recognition of same-sex couples in Europe The movement towards legal recognition of same-sex couples has developed rapidly in Europe over the past two decades. Our societies are made up of a rich diversity of individuals, relationships and families. Today, 47 countries in the world, 27 of which are in the Council of Europe, provide some form of legal recognition for same-sex couples. Granting rights and benefits to same-sex couples does not take anything away from different-sex couples who already have access to them. The law of 18 May amending certain provisions of the Civil Code with respect to permitting adoption by couples of the same sex entered into force on 3 June The considerations I offer in this section are strictly about civil marriage and not religious marriage. If a same-sex couple chooses to separate, there is no framework to regulate maintenance rights and duties toward each other or for the children. The children of same-sex couples may be left without the care of the person whom they have always known as a parent.
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