The Malta Independent 20 January 2020, Monday

LGBT community celebrates once more

Malta Independent Saturday, 12 July 2014, 00:21 Last update: about 6 years ago

Family: Where Love Matters More is the theme chosen for this year’s Pride Week as the LGBTI community celebrates the passing of the Civil Unions Act last April. The bill grants same-sex couples with the opportunity to enter legally-recognised civil unions, an arrangement which is effectively equivalent to marriage in all but name.

A gay parade held in the streets of Valletta this evening is the highlight of a series of activities which the gay community is holding to celebrate, and this year, after the enactment of the civil unions bill, they have so much to be happy about. They have also been granted the right to apply to adopt children just like other couples.

The event was much less attended when compared to the party that was organised in St george’s Square when Parliament enacted the civil unions law.

“The pride march has been going on since 2004, however this year it provides for a bigger celebration,” says MGRM co-ordinator Gabi Calleja. In fact, tonight the community celebrated in St George’s square in Valletta, the same location where last April, the same community celebrated the passing of the bill. The pride march is a common in many countries. The first pride parade recorded dates back to 1969, a year after the Stonewall riots, when police raided a village bar frequented by the LGBT community.

Several organisations including MGRM, We Are, Adieus and Drachma got together to organize a week of events seeking to raise awareness and understanding with respect to misconceptions that exists around the impact of parenting by same-sex couples.

Speaking to The Malta Independent student organization We Are said that awareness of LGBT issues remain crucial – “it is important that different individuals get together during a pride march, allowing the public to witness positive images of LGBT persons in Malta.”

Present for the event were Ministers Helena Dalli and Owen Bonnici, as well as a number of MPs including Kristy Debono and Paula Mifsud Bonnici.

Dr Mifsud Bonnici said that the PN has taken part in such a manifestation for several years. When it was pointed out that the PN’s abstention on the civil unions bill had led to criticism, Dr Mifsud Bonnici said that the party must now look ahead. “We have set up a special forum that sees to the rights of LGBT people, which must be safeguarded like all other rights,” she said.

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