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Human Rights Minister faces uphill battle on gay adoption rights

Revellers celebrate Prague Pride 2015. Source: Wikicommons

Christian Democrat party continues to block the amendment to allow a gay couple to jointly adopt a child

By BOHEMIST STAFF

PRAGUE – Members of Parliament continue to scorn as a “social experiment” Minister for Human Rights Jiri Dienstbier’s efforts to equalize adoption rights in the Republic.

Currently, a gay citizen can only adopt a child as an individual if he or she is not in a registered partnership. His or her partner cannot co-adopt the child, nor can the couple adopt as a couple, regardless if they are legally married. Straight married couples can continue to adopt children as individuals or couples or adopt each other’s children once they are in a registered partnership – a privilege denied to gay couples.

The Constitutional Court has ruled this discriminatory restriction illegal. PROUD, a gay rights activist group, called the ruling, “a very important step on the road to equality of gays”.

The next step was for parliament to change the illegal legislation.

The Minister for Human Rights had been lobbying for support for a legislative amendment that would allow gay spouses to adopt children.

Disenstbier had been trying to push through the amendment before the August parliamentary break and before Prague’s sixth Pride festival.

But, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka failed to schedule the necessary debates, perhaps preferring to discuss a load of rubbish instead.

Gay marriage has been legal in the Czech Republic since 2006, despite a presidential veto by then-President Vaclav Klaus. Earlier this week gay activist Milda Slehofar told the Czech News Agency earlier this week that 2,233 unions had been legally concluded since the passage of the law ten years ago. Despite, this progressive legalisation of a union between a man and man or woman and woman, not all in the halls of parliament are on board.

Christian Democrats leader Pavel Bělobrádek was quoted in local media as saying, “We consider it extremely important for the state, in the best interests of children and to support families and marriage between a man and a woman and [not] social experiments”.

PM Sobotka had his own run-in with a rouge MP over the hot-button issue. A member of Sobotka’s Social Democrat’s party, Pavlina Nytrova cultivated controversy when she made public statements alleging that homosexuals would try to legalise sex with children, were alcoholics, promiscuous and mentally unsound.

Sobtoka slapped his party member down pretty quickly, demanding she apologise for her frankly mentally unsound commentary.

Nytrova refused and has said she won’t run for re-election with the Social Democrats. Alongside some pretty serious glamour shots on her website she was unapologetic in a statement on the matter, saying she had been unfairly persecuted by the media and that she still had a lot of support for fans. We’re assuming none of those fans are mentally unsound..

Prague Pride Festival kicks off on August 7 this year, check out the schedule here:

https://www.praguepride.cz/en/?tribe_events_cat=programme-2016

Bohemist

Bohemist is an upstart news outlet serving the Czech Republic. Feel free to write us at editor@bohemist.cz.

About Bohemist

Bohemist is an upstart news outlet serving the Czech Republic. Feel free to write us at editor@bohemist.cz.

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