MGRM to continue pushing for gay marriage

MGRM coordinator says Labour and PN edging closer on the official recognition of gay couples, with Labour calling it civil unions and PN civil partnerships.

PN deputy leader Simon Busuttil meets with MGRM coordinator Gabi Calleja.
PN deputy leader Simon Busuttil meets with MGRM coordinator Gabi Calleja.

The coordinator of the Malta Gay Rights Movement Gabi Calleja is categorical that the movement will continue pushing for the right of gay couples to get married despite a lack of consensus from the political side.

Addressing the press, Calleja said that the Nationalist and Labour parties were edging closer in the position over the recognition of gay couples, with PN calling it 'civil partnership' and Labour 'civil union'.

"Even though the PN is not ready to use the word 'marriage', it changed its position from the proposed cohabitation and civil partnerships bill which MGRM had opposed and is now edging closer to our position," Calleja said.

She also said that politicians were realising that society was changing and could no longer procrastinate to acknowledge and carry out the necessary change.

Meeting with PN deputy leader Simon Busuttil at the PN's headquarters, Calleja said that gay marriage and the gender identity bill were two important pending issues that must be tackled.

"Gay marriage is a clear objective of the movement, but no agreement has so far been reached," Calleja said, as she added that the meeting between the NGO and the political party was an opportunity for the LGBT community to get informed over PN's plans and proposals.

After the meeting, Calleja also revealed that Justice Minister Chris Said and Labour MP Evarist Bartolo had agreed that the gender identity bill would be approved in parliament.

Calleja also thanked Simon Busuttil for upholding a request by the MGRM to meet up with the PN. In the first few minutes during which the press was allowed to cover, Callega admitted that progress had been achieved over the past five years.

She said that the introduction of gay hate crime in the Maltese laws and laws preventing sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace have been welcomed by the gay community.

"These were two important steps that made a difference in the LGBT community," she said.

On his part, Busuttil said that positive steps had been made towards increasing the rights enjoyed by LGBT individuals, but conceded that these weren't enough. He also said that the Cohabitation Bill would have provided gay couples with rights and duties.

"If reelected, this law will come into force as soon as possible," he promised.

Busuttil also said that even though the MGRM and the PN may have held different positions on different issues, the two sides always found ways on how to concentrate on the common grounds.

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Emmanuel Mallia
Why is the curia silent !! This will be the end of a social order. Queers need medical research, not so called rights
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Emmanuel Mallia
Now, we have no alternative, but to boycott the election !
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@Thorny: ... I agree with you that Maltese society is not yet ready for 'gay marriage', and, as I have often written here and elsewhere, society itself needs time to adapt and become comfortable with such change. ... As such it is a very good first step to give legal recognition to same-sex couples via a civil union / partnership -- and removing any discrimination! ... I have to say however that it is indeed a parady of 'marriage' if all it boils down to is who would remove a garter or who would 'throw the bouquet'. ... I hate to disagree with anyone, but I see Marriage / Civil Union / Partnership is a loving union of two people given legal recognition which enables them to better function in society, with its entailing rights and obligations! This in my very humble opinion.
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Luke Camilleri
Labour calling it civil unions and PN civil partnerships - AND KEEP IT THAT WAY! GAY MARRIAGE IS A PARODY OF MARRIAGE! What will we have 2 brides or 2 grooms? Who will throw the bouquet and who will remove the garter???
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No more RELIGIO ET PATRIA for gonziPN. A seat in Castille is better than a seat in heaven. "UTTER HYPOCRITES".
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"Even though the PN is not ready to use the word 'marriage', it changed its position from the proposed cohabitation and civil partnerships bill which MGRM had opposed and is now edging closer to our position," For the PN the policy now is: If you cannot beat them join them!!! Or sis we say in Maltese: "Imxi mal-kurrent ghax hekk jaqbel."
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Busuttil promised "if reelected, this law will come into force as soon as possible" ... 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 -- WAS THAT NOT SOON ENOUGH??? ... Iddahhaqniex ja Gimmick!... Yes Simon MGRM was foolish enough to trust you and your ilk and what did it bring it?!? A VERY BIG NOTHING!!! Only empty promises repeated before every election. ... It is now too late! ... I REPEAT THE CALL FOR EVERY GAY PERSON, THEIR FAMILIES, FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES -- AS WELL AS ANY LIBERAL-MINDED PERSON ON THE ISLANDS TO TURN ITS BACK ON THE PN!!! This is a lesson they must learn. ... The party that wants LGBT backing and support MUST PROMISE IN WRITING AND UNEQUIVOCALLY TO ENACT THE CIVIL UNION / PARTNERSHIP LAW WITHIN 3 MONTHS OF GAINING OFFICE!!! This should be no problem especially now that supposedly both parties have similar views on the subject. BUT THOSE PARTIES WANTING LGBT BACKING MUST PROMISE TO INTRODUCE SAME-SEX UNIONS / PARTNERSHIPS LAW WITHIN 3 MONTHS OF GAINING OFFICE, otherwise we hear the lame excuse of Gonzi that 'there was no time' ... COUNT THE YEARS ABOVE!!! LGBT HAS WAITED TOO LONG AND GAINED NOTHING!!! ... It is now time for CHANGE! VIVA MALTA TAGHAN LKOLL -- INCLUDING THE GAYS!
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David Bongailas
Sorry Ms.Calleja but it is very naive of you to believe that a """new""" PN government will do anything to support the gay community. What did they do in 25 years of government ??? Zero! Nothing! So why should I start believing they have become gay friendly now all of a sudden just before a general election ?! Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.