A lesbian couple’s ten-year legal battle looks set to continue after France's Constitutional Council upheld the country's ban on homosexual marriage Friday.
Corrine Cestino and Sophie Hasslauer’s ten-year battle to marry hit another stumbling block Friday, after France’s Constitutional Council upheld the country’s ban on gay marriage.
Cestino and Hasslauer, who have been in a relationship for almost 14 years and have four children, took their fight to be allowed to legally marry to the country’s highest constitutional court.
The body ruled that there was no conflict between the law as it stands and fundamental rights enshrined by the constitution. The council furthermore argued that it was up to parliament to decide whether the law should change, rather than constitutional authorities.
The couple already have a legally recognised civil partnership, which is known as the “pacs” in France. However, for them, it is not a marriage. The ‘pacs’ contract was introduced in 1999 to appease gay rights campaigners, but legally, it pales in comparison with marriage. “Marriage is the only solution in terms of protecting our children, sharing parental authority, settling inheritance problems and eventual custody if one of us were to die,” the couple told AFP.
Combined with this, public opinion in France seems to be out of step with the constitutional court’s ruling. A survey by TNS Sofres Friday showed 58 percent of respondents in favour of gay marriage and 35 percent against. In 2006, the same pollsters reported 51 percent against and 45 percent for.
Date created : 2011-01-28