We took a big step towards true equality, and made Taiwan a better country.
Gay and Lesbian Rights
The LGBTQ community supported and welcomed the law, but it has not entirely forgiven Tsai for her failure to act after the high court first ruled in that banning unions between same-sex couples was unconstitutional. Tsai had previously hesitated to push forward a compliant law amid a surge of conservative opposition, which included voices within her own party. Her Cabinet did so — eight months later, in February. Tsai had previously hesitated to push forward a compliant law following the high court ruling on same-sex marriage amid a surge of conservative opposition.
In the meantime, groups opposing same-sex marriage backed three referendums aimed at restricting marriage to heterosexual couples. It is a pity that the resulting amendment did not comply with the substance of the referendum, but the Legislative Yuan has its functions and powers.
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Now that the law has been enacted, we are a country ruled by law, and I respect it. He and other KMT frontrunners, such as Kaohsiung mayor Han Kuo-yu, have been careful not to publicly oppose the law since its passage. Fears that the KMT will seek to overturn the law should it regain the presidency, while they may not be entirely unwarranted, remain premature.
In what was a confusing and chaotic process, voters failed to deliver a clear mandate to either legalise or ban same-sex unions. Past opinion polls have shown that most Taiwanese support same-sex marriages, albeit at a slightly lower rate than their backing of same-sex unions.
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Following the high court ruling, however, Taiwan saw an influx of vocal opponents of marriage equality, backed monetarily by foreign hate groups and guilty of spreading disinformation prior to the November referendum. It is thus hard to quantify to what extent gay marriage is a front-burner issue for the Taiwanese electorate.
The KMT is polling well in projected matchups against Tsai, the incumbent, but it is unlikely to lean heavily on a stance that could alienate moderate voters — many of whom will, on principle, bristle at seeing the status of a recently passed law thrust into a partisan battle. Tsai has spent the past two months fending off an unexpected primary challenge from William Lai, her former premier and the popular ex-mayor of Tainan.
Lai has accused Tsai of adopting an ineffective cross-strait strategy, arguing for a more direct confrontation with China. In May, a gay couple in Taiwan registered their marriage as the first in Asia after the island legalized same-sex marriage. It has maintained that position in rebutting the charges by same-sex couples in their damages suits. A recent ruling by the Mooka branch of the Utsunomiya District Court challenged that interpretation of Article In awarding damages to a woman in her 30s who broke up with her same-sex partner because of infidelity, the branch court recognized that their relationship — they lived together since , obtained a marriage certificate in the United States and had a wedding ceremony in Japan, until they broke up in — effectively amounted to common-law marriage even though same-sex marriage is not legalized in this country.
Therefore, the court ruled, their relationship deserved legal protection similar to that granted to a common-law partnership.
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In a recent survey by the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, roughly 70 percent of some 6, married women said they support same-sex marriages, and 75 percent of the respondents agreed that some form of legal protection should be accorded same-sex couples. Social recognition of sexual minorities is growing. According to an earlier survey of 60, people by major advertising agent Dentsu Inc.
Moves are afoot by local governments and businesses to grant recognition to same-sex couples. Today, more than 20 municipalities across the country issue partnership certificates to same-sex couples that call for them to be treated the same as married couples.
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But such a certificate has no legally binding power and those municipalities remain a tiny minority. Still, same-sex couples face various disadvantages because they cannot legally marry. They are not given the same inheritance rights granted to married couples when a partner dies, or covered by spousal tax deductions. They cannot sign papers consenting to medical procedures for their partners and may be denied hospital visits because they are not legally a family member.
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