THE ALLIANCE for Family (AZR) has collected the required number of signatures to hold a referendum on what it is calling the protection of family, by which the group is seeking to ensure, among other things, that marriage is defined by law strictly as a union between a man and a woman. It plans to hand in the petition, signed by some 400,000 people, to President Andrej Kiska on August 27, the SITA newswire reported.

“We have achieved our goal and I am honoured that the AZR, as the first civic initiative in the history of Slovakia, managed to collect the necessary number of signatures to hold the referendum,” said Anton Chromík, spokesperson for the AZR, as quoted by SITA.

The AZR collected the signatures in several ways, like visiting summer festivals and hiring volunteers. Some people even sent the petitions in by mail themselves.

“Thanks to this we know that people are interested in issues connected to the protection of family and we hope that the referendum will be successful,” Chromík added, as quoted by SITA.

The spokesperson also appreciated that many people have donated money to the AZR, which helped finance the collection of the signatures. According to him, the organisation has received more than €20,000.

The AZR further revealed that it wants to pose four questions in the referendum: whether voters agree with defining marriage as strictly a union between one man and one woman; whether they agree that homosexual or other couples should not be able to seek the rights connected to marriage; whether they agree that homosexual couples should not be able to adopt children; and whether they agree that parents should decide how to educate their children at schools about sensitive cultural-ethical issues, like sexual behaviour and euthanasia, as reported by SITA.

The group claims that they organised the collection of signatures so that the referendum can be held on the same day as the upcoming municipal election, November 15, to save the costs.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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