Monday, 21 January 2013

Malta Today: Greens to support gay marriage, adoption and non-discrimination in IVF

Alternattiva Demokratika: ‘We’re the only party to support full equality on LGBT rights’
Thursday 17 January 2013 - 09:30

Green party Alternattiva Demokratika is pledging to work for the legislation of same-sex marriage if elected in parliament, a major policy plank it announced today together with proposals for non-discrimination for IVF treatment and equal adoption.

AD is the only party so far to support gay marriages: Labour leader Joseph Muscat said he will legislate for civil unions between gay men and women, while the Nationalist government has already drafted a bill that recognised cohabiting partnerships for both same-sex and opposite-sex unions.

But AD is also supporting non-discrimination in IVF treatment after both sides of the House supported a law restricting assisted reproduction to single mothers and same-sex couples.

"Sexual orientation should not preclude couples from giving children the love and care they need. It's not only the Greens who support these proposals but also other parties and politicians like US President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Francois Hollande," AD chairperson Michael Briguglio said.

"Social justice, equality and civil rights are among the pillars on which AD is built. Just as AD was the first to put the right for divorce on the political agenda, it was also AD which came out with clear and progressive proposals in favour of LGBT rights," Angele Deguara, AD spokesperson for social policy and civil rights, said.

"AD is in fact the only party which is fully endorsing all Malta Gay Rights Movement proposals. We believe that LGBT persons should be treated at par with heterosexual persons in every social aspect including where civil marriage, adoption and the right to IVF treatment are concerned. Rights, obligations, procedures and criteria which apply to straight persons and couples should also apply to LGBT persons and couples."

Deguara said the value of includsion of the LGBT community should also be reflected in schools. "We believe the Constitution should be amended so that every form of discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity is prohibited.

"Above all we believe that politicians have the duty and the responsibility to raise public awareness about the rights of the LGBT community so that their inclusion will not take place only on a legal and political level but also on a social level, as it should."

AD chairperson Michael Briguglio said AD was the only party supporting full equality for LGBT rights. "We welcome the fact that both the PN and PL have improved their policies on LGBT matters, but both parties still retain certain discriminatory policies. PN and PL have agreed to introduce IVF legislation which discriminates against persons such as lesbian couples and single persons.

"They also disagree with same-sex marriage and they have not taken AD's proposal to change legislation to clearly allow same-sex couples to adopt, if the couple is deemed fit for adoption by the experts of the government's adoption and social services."

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