Today, on Friday, June, 22 the Czech government has given a backing to a bill which would allow same-sex marriage in Czechia, making it the first country from former communist Europe (with exception of former East Germany) to acknowledge marriage equality.
Czechia introduced registered partnerships in 2006 granting partial recognition to same-sex partnerships. During the last two turbulent weeks, first, a group of 46 MPs across different parties submitted a bill that aims to amend the Czech Civil code and is intended to grant same-sex partners the option of entering into a full marital status. In order to pass this bill, a simple majority of 200 MPs would be required. However, just a couple of days later, last week, an opposing bill, presented by 37 lawmakers, called for a definition of marriage as the union of “one man and one woman” to be inserted into the constitution. The constitutional change would require 120 votes.
A map in which we present results from public opinion polls across the whole Europe shows, that Czechia, together with Lichtenstein, Switzerland, Italy, and Slovenia are the only European countries with a majority of public favouring same-sex marriages that have not yet introduced marriage equality or confirmed its introduction in the next year which is the case of Austria.
Although the same-sex marriage legislation may be a step closer to reality after its backing by the government, it is uncertain when the parliament may get to a vote as the current political situation has been struggling to create a full-fledged administration since last October’s election. However, the prime minister Andrej Babiš has said that his government backs same-sex marriage.