Mexico: Michoacán Inching Closer to Gay Marriage

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Michoacán’s journey to marriage equality is likely coming to a close as the President of the state’s Human Rights Commission stated that in the coming days the full Michoacán Congress will vote on a proposal to include same-sex marriage in their Family Code. She added that there is a wide consensus among the Legislature to approve the law.

Michoacán has seen a lot of activity regarding the subject since last August when its Congress was ordered by a local judge to extend marriage rights to gay couples. The ruling cited the Mexican Constitution which bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gave Congress and the Governor less than a week to fix the matrimonial laws or risk being penalized. Eventually, the Legislature pleaded for more time and started working on a new Family Code.

Despite similar precedents in other states and a court order, civil unions were added to the Family Code in September instead of marriage which set the stage for a new lawsuit against the state. The lawsuit filed in October deemed the civil unions both discriminatory and unconstitutional and is currently pending before the Mexican Supreme Court.

After a more-willing Congress was sworn in at the end of 2015, word arose that a marriage proposal may be tacked on to the existing Family Code. With pressure from LGBT rights groups and the threat of more judicial reprimanding from a gay-friendly Supreme Court looming, the newly-appointed Congress began work to fill the legal gap and allow gay couples to marry. If the proposal is approved, Michoacán will join Mexico City and the states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Guerrero, Jalisco, Nayarit and Quintana Roo where couples can marry without a court injunction.

For more information on the journey to marriage equality in Mexico, please visit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Same-sex_marriage_in_Mexico

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