PUBLIC STATEMENT - TO: ALBANIAN PARLIAMENT

Tirana, 18 May 2018- The PINK Embassy Albania, through this public statement to the members of the Albanian Parliament and political parties in Albania, want to bring to your attention that Albania continues to violate the rights of the LGBTI people, as it still does not allow and does not guarantee the marriage equality for all its citizens. Discrimination and social exclusion of the LGBTI people extends to the aspect that is most important to each of us, love and family.

Today, no LGBTI person has the legal right to cohabitate, marry and create a family. This is an open breach of the Article 53 of the Albanian Constitution, as the Family Code defines the marriages as the union between a man and a woman, discriminating openly and without any legal, scientific or social argument, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons. Prejudice, fear, ignorance, and religious pressure in Albania seem to be among the factors that for so long have led to discrimination in marriage and civil partnership.

In Europe there are 14 states officially recognizing equality of same sex marriages and 12 others recognise civil partnership. Experience in these countries has shown that marriage and the establishment of LGBT families, despite prejudices, has strengthened societies by making them more tolerant and more democratic.

Equality in marriage, although apparently doesn’t seem the most urgent demand of the LGBTI community in Albania, still represents one of the basic human rights! The right to establish a family and to fulfil all the obligations deriving from it, regardless of the sexual orientation or gender identity. This civil right in any respect does not affect the rights of other individuals.

We take this chance to remind the public opinion and the Parliament of Albania that PINK Embassy has publicly demanded equality in marriage since 2010. In this context, we would like to inform the MPs and the wider public that in the days to come, PINK Embassy with the support of the civil society organizations, will submit to the Legal Commission of the Albanian Parliament our legal recommendations for the amendment of the Family Code aiming to eliminate any barriers that keeps alive the discrimination, exclusion and state violence against LGBTI individuals.

Albania is not a country that bases its legislation on the discrimination of LGBTI citizens. We invite everyone today to join us in our fight for equality in marriage for all!

This Public Statement is supported by:

  1. PINK Embassy
  2. Albanian Network for LGBTI Rights
  3. Human Rights House Albania
  4. Albanian Helsinki Committee
  5. Open Mind Spectrum Albania
  6. Partners for Children
  7. Children’s Human Rights Centre in Albania (CRCA)
  8. VATRA Albania
  9. Tirana Legal Aid Society (TLAS)
  10. Albanian National Youth Network

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