Ever since Taiwan announced that it would legalize gay marriage (though, religious groups are trying to thwart that effort), many have wondered which Asian country would become the second to allow same-sex marriage.
With Thailand's general tolerance and almost acceptance of LGBTQ people, many guessed it would come second. Unfortunately, the country isn’t ready for same-sex marriage just yet, but it is working towards creating equal civil unions.
A subcommittee of the Justice Ministry is finishing up preparations for their draft of a Civil Partnership Bill, according to GayStarNews.
This Bill has been in the works since earlier this year when a petition for the government to work on gay rights led to its inception.
If passed, the Bill will give same-sex couples most of the same rights as their straight peers. These rights will include inheritance rights, welfare benefits, the right to adopt, hospital rights, and tax breaks. That said, the bill won’t give same-sex couples the right to use the same last name.
While this bill seems promising, it has a long journey ahead of itself before it becomes law. This includes several public hearings and private meetings.
It was at a recent public hearing that Pitikan Sithidej, the chief of the Right and Liberties Protection Department, shared the Bill should be ready by the end of September.
“The bill is now being vetted by the ministry. We expect to finish considering it by the end of September. After that, it will be forwarded to the cabinet for approval before being submitted to the National Legislative Assembly for deliberation,” said Pitikan Sithidej.
We’ll keep our fingers crossed for the LGBTQ citizens of Thailand.