The Czech Republic is considered to be one of the most liberal Central Europe countries. In 2006 it legalized civil unions for gay couples.
Law against homosexualityEdit
Homosexual sex was legalized in 1962. The age of consent was equalized in 1990 (15, before it was 18 for homosexuals). The Army doesn't question the sexual orientation of soldiers, and allows homosexuals to serve openly. Homosexual prostitution was decriminalized in 1990.
Protection based on sexual orientation in lawEdit
Since 1999, sexual orientation has been treated as a private matter, technically not grounds for discrimination in the military. The 2001 national Labour Code also provides anti-discrimination protection on the basis of sexual orientation, in line with European Union guidelines.
Recognition of same-sex couplesEdit
There is some legal recognition of same-sex couples. Domestic Partnership (unregistered cohabitation) has been available since 2001. The Czech Republic has granted "persons living in a common household" inheritance and succession rights in housing.
A plan for registered partnerships (civil unions), with some of the rights of marriage, was rejected four times, in 1998, 2001, 2003, and 2005. However, on 16 December 2005 a new civil unions bill was passed by the Czech House of Representatives; it was also adopted by the Senate in 26 January 2006, but later vetoed by the President. On 15 March 2006 the President's veto was overturned by the House of Representatives and the law came into force on 1 July, 2006. Consequently, since this date, the Czech Republic offers civil unions for same-sex couples, with some of the rights of marriage.
A poll conducted by the Angus-Reid Global Monitor conducted in December 2006 found that the Czech Republic favored Same-Sex Marriage at 52%. This percentage number being above the European Union average of 44%, it is one of the few countries that consider same-sex marriage as a likelihood. If legalized, the Czech Republic would be the first Slavic-speaking nation to grant such civil rights.
Gay life in the countryEdit
In contrast to the limitations of the communist era, the Czech Republic has become socially very liberal after 1989 and is one of the more gay-friendly countries in the European Union. This recent opening process may have been helped by the fact that the Czech population has traditionally shown relatively low levels of religious belief for a long time. There is a large gay community in Prague, less so in the rest of the country. In 2004 public opinion showed great support for registered partnerships for same sex couples, with 60% agreeing with such a law. Additionally, the December 2006 Eurobarometer shows that 52% of Czechs support full same-sex marriage (above the EU average of 44%) and according to the newest surveys, 39% of Czechs agree with gay - adoption.
See also Edit
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