The decision by the Senate directly defies a previous ruling by the Supreme Court that it must allow equal marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples. The vote was 51-17 against, a day after Senators debated on the issue, and Rainbow flags were out in force in Bogota, in pro-equality demonstrations. In 2001, the Colombian Constitutional Court issued a ruling that required politicians to ‘repair the deficit of legal protection’ for same-sex couples in the country by the 20 June 2013 or same-sex couples would be granted the right to marry. However, in 2009, a court ruled that this would not mean the right to adopt, as straight couples have the right to do.
What’s next? The Washington Blade reports:
The Constitutional Court in 2011 issued a ruling that said the country’s Congress must pass legislation within two years that extends the same benefits heterosexuals receive through marriage to same-sex couples. Gays and lesbians can legally register their unions if lawmakers fail to act on this judicial mandate by June 20.
Not sure exactly what that means, though – marriage? Domestic partnership?