In recent years, a significant wave of change has swept through many nations worldwide, bringing about a transformation in traditional concepts associated with marriage. A central element of this revolution is the growing acceptance and legalisation of same-sex marriages, a step forward in the fight for LGBTQIA+ rights.
Countries across all continents are gradually embracing diversity and recognising the right of two individuals of the same sex to join in marriage. This transformation is a milestone in the history of civil rights, highlighting a cultural shift that reflects the increasing awareness of the need for equality and inclusivity.
In a statement shown on the state broadcaster ERT (10/01/24), Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced that his government is set to introduce a bill to legalise same-sex marriage. This significant step would represent further efforts to implement LGBTQ+ rights, diverging from the conservative values of the Orthodox Church, which has historically opposed same-sex unions.
Mitsotakis reiterated the commitment to “eliminate any discrimination based on sexual orientation.” The Prime Minister, with a liberal background and hailing from the New Democracy party, emphasised that this initiative is not revolutionary but aligns with many other European countries.
The proposed bill, promised as early as the summer of 2023, is part of a broader government strategy to ensure equal rights for all citizens. If approved, same-sex marriage will become a reality in Greece, a significant step beyond the current possibility of civil unions for same-sex couples introduced in 2015.
Opposition to the bill primarily comes from the Orthodox Church and more conservative sectors within Mitsotakis’s party. However, the Prime Minister stated that he would not force everyone to support the proposal, seeking instead cross-party support to ensure its approval.
Despite the opposition, Mitsotakis remains optimistic about the bill’s approval. In a Pew Research Center survey in 2023, 49% of Greek voters expressed support for same-sex marriage, highlighting a division of opinions in the country.
The proposed bill, according to Mitsotakis, will not change laws regarding assisted parenthood but will focus on ensuring rights for existing children of same-sex parents, including those adopted or born through surrogacy. The proposal aims to protect parental rights in case of the death of one of the parents.
The Ilga Europe Rainbow Index positioned Greece 13th out of 49 countries examined for LGBTQIA+ rights. Despite challenges, the country has recorded an increase in the quality of life for its queer community, rising from 52% to 57% in the last year, according to Ilga Europe.
The future looks promising for supporters of same-sex marriage, but it also raises questions about the direction society is heading. How will other countries react to this cultural shift? The legalisation of same-sex marriage is just the beginning of a broader discussion on LGBTQ+ rights and social inclusivity.
In conclusion, progress towards universal acceptance of same-sex marriage is a significant step towards a fairer and more inclusive society. The evolution of marriage laws reflects society’s ability to embrace diversity and recognise the universal value of love.
Stefanie Pappalardo, Digital Marketing Executive