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LGBT people are not second-class citizens, remove Section 6 from Civil Union Act

LGBT people are not second-class citizens, remove Section 6 from Civil Union Act
  
  

 


Why this is important

Home Affairs revealed that only 28,6% of Home Affairs branches have marriage officers who are willing to marry same‐sex couples. Thus meaning that only 117 of the 409 offices nationwide will welcome gay or lesbian couples who would like to get married under the Civil Union Act.

If you break it down per province, in Gauteng, only 17 out of 57 offices will conduct same‐sex marriages, along with 10 out of 59 in the Eastern Cape, 5 out of 28 in the Free State, 10 out of 58 in Mpumalanga, 16 out 61 in Limpopo and 10 out of 34 in the Western Cape. In the Northern Cape, the number is 9 out of 22, in KZN it’s 29 out of 68 and in North West, 10 out of 22 will assist same‐sex couples.

The Civil Union Act that legalized same‐sex marriage in 2006 allows marriage officers to opt out of registering same‐ sex marriages “on the ground of conscience, religion and belief”. Which can create a bad president if people start using their belief system to do 'OFFICIAL' government work. Furthermore the fact that LGBTIQA South Africans have to 'pick and choose' from a small selection of Home Affairs Offices, where they won’t be discriminated against shows that the Civil Union Act has entrenched second‐class citizenship onto LGBTIQA South Africans.

Former Minster Gigaba said they the would be doing training to sensitizing Home Affairs staff but when the staff knows they have the right to discriminate against LGBTIQA South Africans, how would the effectively implement and allow same‐sex marriages to not be discriminated against? The government should be a body that serves all citizens equally no matter the race, religion, gender or sexual preference. And not until the proper legal directive is taken to ensure equality – no amount of sensitisation and or training for that matter will achieve that.

This has been codified as an unconstitutional provision that allows state employees to discriminate against LGBTIQA South Africans and we need to change this.

Posted June 8, 2017
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