Same-Sex Marriage: Japan’s ban on same-sex marriages is not a violation of the constitution, a district court in Osaka has ruled. This order of the court is a big setback for gay rights activists and couples. Earlier, another district court in Sapporo ruled in 2021 that the failure to recognize same-sex marriage was “unconstitutional”.
The constitution of Japan defines marriage as “between both sexes”. Japan is the only country in the G7 group of developed countries that does not allow same-sex people to marry. Opinion polls show that the majority of the general public is in favor of allowing same-sex marriage in Japan.
Several regions – including Tokyo – have begun issuing partnership certificates to help same-sex couples rent property and gain hospital visit rights. The Osaka case was filed by three same-sex people, two men and one woman. This is the second case of its kind in the country.
The court rejected the petitioners’ demand
The court rejected the trio’s claims—being unable to marry is unconstitutional—as well as seeking damages of 1 million yen ($7,414; £6,058) for each couple.
And what does the court order say?
But the court also said that there was not enough public debate about same-sex marriage and that “it may be possible to create a new system that recognizes the interests of same-sex couples”.
The court, in its judgment, observed, “From the point of view of individual dignity, it may be held that the benefits of public recognition of same-sex couples through official recognition should be taken into account.” It is necessary to realize. What kind of system is appropriate for this, the public debate on this has not been fully done.”
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