Honduran Lawmakers on Track to Toughen Constitutional Ban on Marriage Equality

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Monday January 25, 2021

President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernandez
President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernandez  (Source:Esteban Felix/AP)

Lawmakers in Honduras are on track to amend that nation's constitution in a way that will more deeply enshrine anti-LGBTQ bias in bedrock law, NBC New reports.

In a Jan. 21 vote, congressional members "voted to amend the constitution making it much harder to reverse existing hard-line bans on abortion and same-sex marriage," NBC reported. Constitutional articles already ban marriage equality, but the change would require a two-third majority in order to reverse those provisions, raising the bar on achieving marriage equality, the article explained.

"Mario Perez, a lawmaker with the ruling party of President Juan Orlando Hernandez, explained during a virtual floor debate that the change will create a 'constitutional lock' on any would-be softening of the existing articles," NBC News noted.

"Same-sex marriages, de facto unions and adoption by same-sex couples have been constitutionally banned since 2005," Wikipedia notes. Even so, "Discrimination against LGBT people is illegal in Honduras under Article 321 of the Penal Code."

The process requires two votes to complete, with the next vote expected to take place in 2022.

The proposed changes would similarly strengthen the country's constitutional ban to abortion.

Honduran LGBTQ equality advocate Kevihn Ramos decried the vote, saying it was "the product of a state-imposed religion on Honduras," NBC News said.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

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