SUPPORT for all types of families, not just those that fall under the constitutional definition recently passed by the Slovak parliament, was the theme of Bratislava’s fifth gay pride parade, which took place this year on June 28 in the centre of the capital.

The event attracted several hundred people, with the TASR newswire estimating the crowd at about 1,000.

The 2014 Rainbow Pride March was organised by various civic associations, like the Queer Leaders Forum, the Initiative Inakosť, NoMantinels, TransFúzia and informal activists. The annual event unites the voices of the worldwide LGBTI rights movement, calling for equal rights for the non-heterosexual community in general. This year, however, a provision which was added to the Slovak constitution and which LGBTI rights groups see as a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, prompted Pride organisers to focus on the specifics of the problems the local non-heterosexual community is experiencing in Slovakia.

During the event, organisers presented a rainbow flag along with their own legislative counter-proposal that they believe would provide equal protection to all forms of families, regardless of gender, race or sexual orientation.

“We want to respond this way to the discriminatory support for only one type of family arrangement,” said the event’s spokesperson, Romana Schlesinger, as quoted by TASR. “We attempted to also invite to Rainbow Pride other groups of people aside from the LGBTI community, who were affected by the change in the constitution: single parents and those living in a relationship out of wedlock.”

Several conservative groups, however, organised the third edition of a live chain, entitled “Proud of the Family”, to coincide with the Pride parade on June 28 and to express their opposing opinion that family based on the marriage between a man and a woman deserves exceptional status.

“Nothing is as exceptional and no friendly relations [can] compare to a family based on the marriage of a man and a woman,” they wrote in their press release.

The international community in Slovakia traditionally supports the Pride march. This year, too, several embassies in Slovakia supported the event, a total of 21 members of the international community, including Albania, Australia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Luxembourg, Norway, the United Kingdom and the US.

“We, as members of the international community, support respecting general human rights as the basic element of our work, our mission and our world,” the SITA newswire quoted from their joint statement.

Source: TASR, SITA

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.