Mon, Mar 11, 2002 - Page 1 News List

Same-sex couples might be allowed to adopt

By Sandy Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Ministry of Justice has drafted a proposed law that would allow same-sex couples to form families through adoption.

The provision is a part of the Human Rights Protection Law. If passed by the Legislative Yuan, the law would be the first that specifically mentions gays and lesbians.

Sue Wang, (王時思), executive general of the Judicial Reform Foundation, welcomed yesterday the government's efforts to respect the rights of gays and lesbians.

"We're pleased to know that the government has acknowledged same-sex couples," Wang said.

But while hailing the initiative, Wang also voiced concern over what may happen to the proposed law as it winds its way through the legislative process.

"To ensure that the provision is a practical one that meets the purpose of its intentions, the government should have publicized the proposal more and gathered more input from relevant parties such as gender groups and lawyers," Wang said.

"After all, the primary goal in proposing a law is to implement it and have the results be well received," she said.

In related news, the details concerning the formation of the National Committee for Human Rights have been submitted to the Presidential Office by the Ministry of Justice. The formation of the committee is one of the agenda items for the president's human rights task force.

According to Tsai Ming-hua (蔡明華), secretary-general of the task force, the purpose of the committee is to oversee government agencies and private organizations when it comes to human-rights violations.

"Aside from receiving complaints from the general public concerning violations of human rights, the committee will also have the authority to investigate issues concerning human-rights violations that take place in both government agencies and private corporations," Tsai was quoted as saying.

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