Written by Shivangi Chawla
Finally, On Tuesday, both houses of chile’s congress approved same-sex marriage and also the authorization for adoption by same-sex after 4 years of inaction.
The initiative was approved first by the Senate on a 21-8 vote, with three abstentions, and shortly afterward by the Chamber of Deputies with 82 votes in favor, 20 against, and two abstentions. After the vote in the chamber, many deputies hugged, including some from opposing parties.
The measure now goes to President Sebastian Pinera, who supported the bill and will enter into force 90 days after its publication in the official gazette.
Senators finally approved the marriage equality measure on July 21 and deputies did also on Nov. 23. However, modifications were introduced by the deputies who needed a joint committee of both houses to resolve their differences.
Among the changes agreed to Monday is the recognition in Chile of marriages of same-sex couples performed abroad and the definition of marriage as “a solemn contract between two people” rather than between a man and a woman.
Center-left Sen. Yasna Provoste said that when the right to marry and find a family is recognized, “this recognition applies to all people without distinction of sex.”
The proposal had stalled in the Senate for four years, until Pinera gave it his strong backing last January, surprising everyone because he had long argued that marriage was between a man and a woman.
For Juan Pablo Duran and Juan Carlos Rodriguez, the approval came late because they were legally united at the end of November under the Common Union Agreement, which since 2015 has regulated legal aspects of same-sex unions such as inheritance, but does not rule on adoptions.
Duran said the pair now plan to be formally married once the new measure goes into effect.
He said they have no plans to adopt a child but added: “It is not a completely closed issue. To be able to give a chance in life to those who don’t have any would be an honor and joy.”