For Immediate Release
Brazil National Council of Justice Paves Way for the Freedom to Marry
NEW YORK - Today Brazil’s National Council of Justice ruled that government offices have no standing to refuse marriage licenses to same-sex couples, moving the freedom to marry forward for gay and lesbian people nationwide. The ruling follows decisions by 14 of Brazil’s states and the national capital region that same-sex couples could marry without a court petition, as well as lower court rulings in favor of the freedom to marry. While the High Court could modify today’s ruling, that seems unlikely, and Brazil is now likely to become the latest country to embrace the freedom to marry nationwide.
Evan Wolfson, founder and president of Freedom to Marry, released the following statement:
“With today's ruling in Brazil solidifying the progress made in Brazilian states and its national capital, Latin America's largest country today joined the many other nations on five continents where same-sex couples can share in the freedom to marry. With victories for the freedom to marry in Mexico, Uruguay, New Zealand, and France already this year, and the British Parliament set to vote later this May, the global momentum for marriage reflects and reinforces the progress here in the United States, with three states already voting for marriage this year even as the Supreme Court is set to rule by the end of June.”
Freedom to marry legislation passed earlier this year in Uruguay, France, and New Zealand. After it takes effect in those countries, same-sex couples will have the freedom to marry, regionally or nationwide, in 17 countries around the world.
Freedom to Marry is the gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide. Headed by Evan Wolfson, one of America's leading civil rights advocates and lawyers, Freedom to Marry brings new resources and a renewed context of urgency and opportunity to this social justice movement.