Taiwan grants adoption rights for same-sex couples in massive win for equality
Taiwan has passed ground-breaking legislation to grant same-sex couples full adoption rights.
In 2019, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage, and has now approved an amendment to an existing law after years of fierce campaigning by LGBTQ+ activists.
The extension to the Same-Sex Marriage Act, approved on Tuesday (16 May), allows same-sex couples to jointly adopt a child to whom neither of them are related, a right previously only open to heterosexual couples and single people, CNN reported.
Previously, if a same-sex couple wanted to adopt a child, only one of them could register as the child’s legal parent.
“I am very excited that we granted joint adoption rights to same-sex couples today,” Fan Yun, a lawmaker from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), said.
“Legally, we have finally returned same-sex couples to their children… parental love is the same, and only through joint adoption can we protect the rights and interests of each other by law.”
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The DPP described the law as a monumental milestone.
The introduction of same-sex adoption in Taiwan follows a ruling in December 2021 that challenged the ban, with a gay man in Kaohsiung City being granted the right to adopt his husband’s child.
A family court ruled that 38-year-old Wang Chen-wei’s child, whom he had previously adopted, could also be adopted by his 34-year-old husband Chen Chun-ju.
At the time, the ruling applied only to their specific case and did not legalise same-sex adoption country-wide, something Chen-wei described as absurd.
“I am happy that my spouse is also legally recognised as the father of our child… but I can’t feel all that happy without amending the law,” he told to AFP.
Taiwan recently held its first LGBTQ+ Pride celebration in two years – after the country relaxed its strict COVID-19 restrictions – which attracted more than 120,000 revellers to the capital Taipei.
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