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The Philippines' Supreme Court refuses to legalise same-sex marriage

The court said the current constitution ‘does not define, or restrict, marriage on the basis of… sexual orientation, or gender identity’.

2019-09-03

Words: Steve Brown

The Philippines’ highest court has refused to legalise same-sex marriage.

Currently in the deeply Catholic nation, society is known for being accepting of same-sex relationships,  but there are few legal protections for LGBTQ people.

Lead plaintiff Jesus Falcis argued that the current legislation was a violation of his rights, but, according to the Daily Mail, the Supreme Court threw out his case primarily on technical grounds.

Despite their decision, in a text released to journalists, the court said that the current constitution "does not define, or restrict, marriage on the basis of… sexual orientation, or gender identity".

It went on to say that same-sex unions "may, for now, be a matter that should be addressed to Congress".

Danton Remoto, chair of LGBTQ political party Ang Ladlad, told AFP: “It simply means we have to continue advocacy for legislating an anti-discrimination bill in Congress, where we have many allies.

“The great stumbling block will be the Senate, peopled by Christian fundamentalists who have forgotten that there is separation of church and state in the Philippines.”