A “same-sex union” bill drafted by HTC chairwoman Cher Wang’s (王雪紅) Faith, Hope and Love Foundation and sponsored by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Lin Tai-hua (林岱樺) yesterday advanced to a second reading.
The DPP caucus at a plenary session successfully moved to advance the bill, titled the “draft enforcement act for Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 748 and Referendum No. 12,” to a second reading.
The New Power Party caucus filed a separate motion to return the bill to the Procedural Committee, which was struck down.
Photo: Huang Yao-cheng, Taipei Times
The result was in line with a decision reached during cross-caucus negotiations on Thursday that all three bills on the issue be reviewed side-by-side during another round of negotiations.
DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) said that the next round of negotiations could begin next week, as the deadline set by the interpretation nears.
It is to be reviewed alongside the Executive Yuan’s “enforcement act of Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 748” and another sponsored by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆) on behalf of the conservative Happiness of the Next Generation Alliance, both of which proceeded to a second reading in March.
Referendum No. 12, which was voted on alongside the nine-in-one elections on Nov. 24 last year, asked voters: “Do you agree that the right to persons of the same sex to create a permanent union should be guaranteed by an institution other than marriage as defined by the Civil Code?”
It passed after garnering 6.4 million “yes” votes to 4.07 million “no” votes.
Lin’s version of the bill uses the term “same-sex union,” while the Cabinet’s version uses “same-sex marriage.”
The latter is in line with the Council of Grand Justices’ interpretation passed on May 24, 2017, which declared the lack of language guaranteeing the right of same-sex couples to get married in the Civil Code unconstitutional, and required that a law or amendment be introduced to legalize same-sex marriage within two years.
Although supporters of Lin’s version have said that it is a compromise between the other two versions, DPP legislators Yu Mei-nu (尤美女) and Tuan Yi-kang (段宜康) said otherwise.
Yu on Thursday called Lin’s version “stark discrimination” against same-sex couples.
The version contains a “fake marriage” clause that would authorize prosecutors or social welfare agencies to request that a court intervene and abrogate a same-sex union if relatives within three degrees of consanguinity of either member of the union believe that it was not for the purpose of two people “living life together,” Yu said on Facebook, questioning what right people have to scrutinize the sincerity of others’ marriage.
The version also has a clause that says: “As one’s conscience and freedom should not be affected by the enactment of this act, conveying or inculcating beliefs against the relationship described in Article 2 [same-sex union] does not constitute discrimination,” she said.
Tuan said that he despises all lawmakers who sponsored or cosponsored the bill, regardless of their party affiliation.
SIXTEEN LOCAL: Three COVID-19 infections are linked to a cluster at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 to a case in New Taipei City and three had unclear sources The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday urged people to increase vigilance and thoroughly practice preventive measures against COVID-19 as it reported 16 locally transmitted cases of the disease. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that 21 cases were confirmed in Taiwan yesterday: 16 local cases, four imported cases and one case undetermined. The locally transmitted cases are three linked to a cluster of infections at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 associated with a previous case in New Taipei City and three with unclear sources of infection. The CECC on Tuesday reported a cluster
ENFORCING CAUTION: Certain entertainment facilities are to close nationwide to prevent people traveling there from high-risk areas in the north, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday raised the COVID-19 alert for Taipei and New Taipei City to level 3 in light of surging cases in the two cities. The enhanced disease prevention measures for level 3 are to be implemented until May 28, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, told a morning news conference at the Executive Yuan in Taipei. With 180 locally transmitted cases confirmed yesterday, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said that the government must take immediate action to protect the public, referring to measures stipulated in the Communicable Disease Control Act (傳染病防治法). Other counties
TRACING TROUBLE: An infected man who had said that all his children were abroad was found to have a daughter in Kaohsiung who tested positive, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported a new daily record of 29 local COVID-19 cases, including seven cases with unknown sources of infection. Of the 29 cases, 16 are linked to tea houses in Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華), Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, told a news briefing in Taipei. The 16 are tea house workers or visitors, or their contacts, the CECC said. Workers and visitors to the establishments have frequent interpersonal contact, but few protective measures against the COVID-19 pandemic are in place, Chen said, urging those who have been exposed or have
RISING TRANSMISSION: The center yesterday reported 333 domestic cases, including 241 cases linked to a cluster of infections from Taipei’s Wanhua District From 12am tomorrow to June 18, foreign nationals who do not hold a valid Alien Resident Certificate or resident visa will not be allowed to enter Taiwan, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced yesterday, as it reported 333 local and two imported cases of COVID-19. Transits through Taiwan will also be suspended during the month-long period, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. “The policy is aimed at conserving the nation’s disease prevention capacity,” he said. Although there had been few imported COVID-19 cases in the past few days, inbound travelers would still take up some