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Slovenians vote in favour of traditional family

Author: Admin
Date: 28th March 2012

Slovenian voters have affirmed the importance of man/woman marriage and motherhood and fatherhood in a national referendum last Sunday.

Results from the vote, showed that 55.1 percent of voters rejected a proposed new family code which opponents say diminished the importance of motherhood and fatherhood, while 44.9 percent backed it.

Aleš Primc, head of the Civil Initiative, which proposed the referendum said that the vote demonstrated that the people of Slovenia “expressed their belief that motherhood and fatherhood are both unique and represent a fundamental value; for the good of a child".

The Family Code which would have permitted same-sex civil partnerships that have the form of marriage, and also would have allowed same-sex couples to adopt the biological children of their partners. It did not allow the adoption of children from a third party.

The law permitting the registration of same-sex couples was passed in 2009, but a campaign was launched to challenge the law by referendum in June 2011. 

The Civil Initiative, a Slovenian children's rights group, collected 42,000 signatures calling for a referendum on the law and submitted these last February.

Opinion polls on the eve of the vote had suggested that the bill would receive about 60 percent support.

The Slovenian President, Danilo Turk, most of the political parties and all major media outlets took stances against the referendum. The ruling centre right party did not take a stance.

However many of the main religious groups were in favour of the referendum. Representatives from the Catholic, Orthodox and Muslim communities in the country signed a joint declaration on the eve of the vote, which reaffirmed the importance of family based on marriage and ask citizens to protect it. 

The commission said turnout was about 29.7 percent, lower than predicted by pollsters.

Under Slovenian law, if a bill is rejected in a referendum it cannot go back to parliament for another 12 months.

The previous Family Code, which will now stay in force for at least another year, was adopted in 1976 when Slovenia was still part of communist Yugoslavia and amended several times over the last decades.

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