Cyprus Mail

MPs discuss most suitable name for civil partnerships bill

A PROPOSAL was tabled yesterday to rename civil partnerships to civil unions to better reflect the provisions of a law currently being discussed by parliament.

House Interior Committee chairman Yiannos Lamaris said the current name — cohabitation agreement or pact — referred to something other than what was actually included in the bill. One proposal was to call it civil union.

Chairman of gay rights group Accept-LGBTI Costas Gavrielides said they agreed with the name change since the Legal Service and the Bar Association pointed out no changes could be made to the provisions.

“It cannot be a pact because the two individuals could add the conditions they wanted,” Gavrielides said. “In this case, the conditions are already agreed, so we are no longer talking about an agreement between two individuals.”

Lamaris said discussion of the issue was intense but MPs should concentrate on the objective of concluding it in a democratic manner.

“It is the right of these people in heterosexual or homosexual relations to adjust their life the way they want, having secured everything others have,” Lamaris said.

On Wednesday, MPs said they would amend the law on adoptions to preclude couples who sign a civil partnership, whether straight or gay, to adopt a child.

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