Italian Court: Gays Have A Right to Family Life


In what is being hailed as a landmark ruling, Italy’s highest civil court has ruled that gay people have a right to family life, affirming that they should have the equivalent rights of straight couples.

The ruling however did not affirm a right to marriage and specifically denied that Italy must recognize same-sex marriages from other countries.

Via the AFP:

In a ruling welcomed by gay rights groups, the court said that homosexuals have the right to “a family life” and, “in specific situations,” to “be treated the same as couples married by law.”

However, homosexuals still cannot legally marry and “do not have the right to register a marriage celebrated abroad,” it found.


The gay rights association Mario Mieli called the ruling “historic.”

“It is clear that the law needs to urgently adapt to changes in society. We cannot wait any longer,” it said in a statement.

It is hoped that this ruling will give energy to a growing call for civil unions in the country.

The case was brought by two men who married in The Hague in 2002. When they attempted to register their partnership in a small town near Rome in which they were living at the time, they were denied by the town council. They subsequently launched a legal battle for recognition.

While this ruling does not in fact constitute a win for the couple, it suggests a developing legal opinion toward the rights of same-sex couples.

“Today’s Supreme Court judgement is important,” Fabrizio Marrazzo, spokesman for activist group Gay Center, is quoted as saying. “The ruling says that gay couples must also enjoy the same legal rights as any heterosexual couple. The words are clear and sharp. Parliament and the government must give an answer”.

Currently, Italy does not allow for same-sex partnership recognition and also doesn’t allow same-sex couples the right to adopt.

Italy, while having enshrined some legal protections for LGBT people in the employment sector, also still lacks broader legal protections for its LGBT citizens and, last year, the country’s lawmakers failed to move a bill that would have remedied this problem.


Related Reading:

‘I’ll Marry You’ Italy’s Pro-Gay Marriage Campaign

Italian Lawmakers Reject LGBT Protections

IKEA Accused of “Swedish Imperialism” Over Italian Gay Advert


Image used under the Creative Commons Attribution License with thanks to nerdcoregirl.


Jennifer Walsh
Jennifer Walsh5 years ago

thanks for the info

sme r.

I'm hopeful that this will mean a massive push from Italian human rights and LGTBQ activists to pass Equal Marriage and adoption rights and all other things the LGBTQ is entitled to.

Ra Sc
Ra Sc5 years ago

It's a step in the right direction, even if there is still quite a ways to go.

Lynne B.
Lynne Buckley5 years ago

Good news:-)

Mary L.
Mary L5 years ago

I've decided to adopt my love. They have to recognize the familial connection then.

I'm thrilled that this step forward is taken. Does it cover just gay and lesbian couples? What about bi-sexual, transgender, queer and intersex people?

Donald T.
Donald T5 years ago

Rights guaranteed and protected by the Constitution, supposedly, apply to everyone. We do not need to spell out each and every group. Everyone. That should be clear enough. There is plenty of evidence gay communities are cleaner safer more stable more educated than others, and children they raise either from their own families and/or adopted families do very well.'The Gay' is not an infectious process or something to 'make' into someone else. republicans love to fib, fabricate, manufacture, halllucinate facts to fit their changing positions. If only they would tell truth, then they would find how much easier it is to live with others. Lies are hard to keep straight. But are not about to figure it out.

John Mansky
John Mansky5 years ago

"No Comment"...

Mari Garcia
Mari Garcia5 years ago

sandy e, before spewing your intolerant crap, maybe you should take time studying spelling and grammer for 3rd graders (because from what i can tell, that is where your education level is at), i know my spellng is horrible but it took me 5 attempts to figure out what you were even trying to say. i thought to myself, maybe this person is from another country so their english isnt perfect but apparently you are from the us. the fact is when it comes to minorities, it becomes a civil rights issue, what needs to be done is laws passed to grant equal rights on a federal level so that politicians and the citizens they govern can focus on "more important" issues.

Mari Garcia
Mari Garcia5 years ago

i find it odd that the law allows for lgbt members to have a family but not the right to marry. its so odd, maybe they are passing equality in baby steps

Joe R.
Joe R5 years ago

A small step - but a step forward none the less.