Amnesty International Slovakia (AIS) has spoken out against a change to the Slovak Constitution this week defining marriage as “a unique union of one man and one woman”, claiming that the change is against both international and European Union law in the field of human rights.
The change, initiated by the Christian democrats of the KDH party and pushed through parliament with the help of the ruling Smer-SD party, discriminates against the LGBT community, AIS says, noting that the move is a step backwards for the country.
“The adoption of this law is a clear step backwards for Slovakia in respect of its obligation to fight against all forms of discrimination and is in conflict to the positive measures adopted specifically to meet this goal”, says Jela Dobošová from AIS.
The homophobic amendment to the Constitution was given a clear thumbs up on Wednesday 4 June and will take effect from 1 September 2014, effectively ruling out any chance of same sex marriages in Slovakia. Discrimination based on sexual orientation is prohibited by both the European convention on human rights and the United Nations, for instance.
Several countries in Europe have similar legislative setups or approaches, including Hungary, Romania, Croatia and Lithuania, while same-sex marriages were recently made legal in the United Kingdom and last year in France. AIS also expressed discontent at how the amendment was passed politically without any social dialogue.