Vote begins in Slovenian referendum to block same-sex marriage

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Slovenia is being urged to vote to remove a ban on same-sex marriage.

The Central European country’s Parliament passed a bill to legalise same-sex marriage earlier this year, to outcry from parts of the Slovenian public.

Votes begin on Tuesday in a referendum which could overturn a law which bans same-sex couples from marrying.

Should Slovenia remove its ban on same-sex marriage through a referendum, like the one in Ireland earlier this year, it would become the first Slavic, Central European and post-Communist nation to do so.

The results of the referendum will be announced on Sunday.

Voters in Slovenia are being asked whether to uphold a law passed in March, which would make same-sex marriage legal.

Campaigners on both sides of the argument have been campaigning to sway votes.

The law has been backed by President Borut Pahor.

Those against the implementation of the equality law have used the outdated argument that children need a mother and a father, and that children do worse if they have same-sex parents.

The referendum was forced after those against the law gathered 80,00 signatures.

Recent polls have shown a small majority of Slovenians support the right of same-sex couples to marry.

The Vice President of the European Commission recently said he wants all 28 EU countries to recognise or legalise same-sex marriage.

Speaking at an Equality Gala in Brussels hosted by ILGA-Europe, Dutch politician Frans Timmermans said the ultimate goal was to get all states to “unreservedly” embrace equality.