Same-Sex Marriage to Be Legal in Cuba

Voters approve sweeping changes to nation's family code
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 26, 2022 7:15 PM CDT
Same-Sex Marriage to Be Legal in Cuba
Cuban President Miguel Diaz Canel speaks to the press after casting his vote at a polling station during the new family code referendum in Havana on Sunday.   (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

Same-sex marriage, surrogate pregnancies, and adoption by gay couples will all be legal in Cuba for the first time, after voters overwhelmingly approved changes to the nation's family code. Officials said Monday the vote in favor of the new code was running at 66%, per the BBC; approval required a majority vote. The new 100-page policy, which also adds protections for women, children, and the elderly, was discussed in a series of community meetings before the final version was settled on.

President Miguel Díaz-Canel said Sunday after casting his vote that the code reflects Cuba's diversity of people, families, and beliefs. Evangelical churches campaigned against the changes, per CNN, but the government used state-run media to lobby for approval. Some opponents wanted the government to suffer a defeat at the polls and thought of the referendum as an effort to improve the regime's image after its crackdowns on political dissent. The government argued that its support for the new code demonstrated it can change with the times. (More Cuba stories.)

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