Ecuador Has Approved Same-Sex Civil Unions

File:Flag of Ecuador.svgEcuador has approved same-sex civil unions.

Following an amendment to its civil code, Ecuador will allow gay couples to enter into civil unions. 

The motion was passed with a majority of 89-1.

Understandably, LGBT couples and campaigners are celebrating this, not only as a victory in the present, but (they hope) as a sign of better things to come.

The law change will also give same-sex couples in a civil union many of the same rights as married couples: certain state benefits and pension rights, for example. Admittedly, however, it does not include provisions for the custody of children or adoption. The amendment is also emphatic in its distinction between same-sex civil unions and marriage. 

There is no plan at present, to legalise gay marriage in Ecuador.

It was earlier in April that Chile announced that it, too, was changing its law to allow same-sex civil unions, so it's good to see positive movement within South America. Especially as the Catholic Church -- so often opposed to same-sex relationships -- remains the predominant moral compass for much of South America's population.

The amendment will first need to be approved by Ecuador's President, Rafael Correa, and the country's executive branch, but it is unlikely to be rejected.



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