Sun, Feb 17, 2019 - Page 1 News List

Taiwanese-English gay couple tie the knot in unofficial ceremony in Miaoli

Staff Writer, with CNA

An Englishman, identified only as Andy, left, and his partner, Chao Shou-chuan, hold hands as they prepare to tie the knot at a train station in Miaoli City yesterday.

Photo: Peng Chien-li, Taipei Times

A 24-year-old Taiwanese man and a 75-year-old Englishman yesterday tied the knot in a ceremony at a train station in Miaoli City.

Chao Shou-chuan (趙守泉) said that some people might find their marriage “strange,” but that the blessings of their loved ones were all that mattered to him, adding that he is fortunate to have his family support him.

His family not only supported the union, but offered to help him prepare for the big day, Chao said.

His father’s support was especially meaningful, he added.

“You are the ones living your lives. Do not worry about what others think,” his father told him, Chao said.

Hundreds of people, including strangers who went to show their support, attended the wedding.

The couple said that they were surprised and moved by the size of the crowd.

Chao said that he met his partner, identified only as Andy, three years ago when he was traveling in the UK during his sophomore year in college.

After dating for about two-and-a-half years, the two decided to get married, although yesterday’s event was purely ceremonial, because same-sex marriage has yet to be legalized in Taiwan.

The Council of Grand Justices in May 2017 ruled that a lack of provisions in the Civil Code to govern same-sex marriage was unconstitutional and ordered the government to remedy the situation within two years.

The process was complicated by referendums in November last year, when voters overwhelmingly rejected altering the Civil Code’s definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman to allow same-sex marriage.

The couple plans to register their marriage in England, where they plan to live.

Chao said that he hopes to register their union before October, when he is to begin graduate school.

Additional reporting by Peng Chien-li

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