The Italian parliament will debate civil unions for gays — “unioni gay”– in September, with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi promising that homosexual couples will have the same rights as married heterosexual couples, including pensions and inheritance guarantees. The only differences will relate to adoption.
According to La Repubblica, the government was inspired for this “rainbow revolution” by the establishment of gay civil partnerships in Britain and Germany.
Ivan Scalfarotto, vice-president of Renzi’s Democratic party and an activist for gay issues, said: “In a perfect world I would like to have gay marriage in Italy, but I would rather have civil union immediately.” He said that gay marriages celebrated abroad would be registered as civil unions in Italy.
However, the Catholic majority of the country is ready to oppose the introduction of gay civil partnership.
According to a report in the Local Italy lags behind many other countries in Europe when it comes to offering rights and protection to homosexuals, falling in 32nd place in 2014’s ILGA Europe Rainbow Map.