Nearly two years after it rejected a
gay marriage bill, the Finnish parliament on Friday narrowly reversed
According to The
Guardian, the vote was 105 to 92.
“Finland should strive to become a
society where discrimination does not exist, human rights are
respected and two adults can marry regardless of their sexual
orientation,” Prime Minister Alexander Stubb said in an open letter
published before voting took place.
A public campaign called on lawmakers
to reconsider the marriage bill rejected in February, 2013.
Any citizens petition that gathers at
least 50,000 valid signatures must be considered. Marriage equality
supporters reached that goal on their first day. Last year,
organizers of the “Tahdon2013” (“I Do”) campaign said that
they had collected more than 162,000 signatures in six months.
A survey released last year showed a
majority (58%) of Finns support marriage equality, while 34 percent
Finland, the last Scandinavian country
to legalize marriage for gay and lesbian couples, has recognized the
unions of gay couples with registered partnerships since 2002. Gay
couples are also allowed to adopt their partner's biological children
Finland is the 12th European
nation with marriage equality.