NELFA press release 21 February 2017


A strong statement at the right time! – The Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Nils Muižnieks, gives his full support to rainbow families.

The Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations (NELFA) is delighted by the recent comments made by the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Nils Muižnieks. He stated that legal recognition for same-sex couples was a question of “equality before the law”. Muižnieks calls on Member States to create “at the very least” registered partnerships and to “seriously consider opening up civil marriage”. Existing laws should be reviewed in order to ensure that they include the same rights and benefits for same- sex couples as they do for married or registered different-sex couples (i.e. in the area of parental rights).

See the full comment here

NELFA’s President, Maria von Känel, says, “I would like to express my great respect for the statement of Commissioner Muižnieks. His strong remarks read like the core parts of our own policy agenda: to reduce discrimination, to stand up for genuine equality and to see family diversity as an asset. It’s time for all Member States to finally comply with their European obligations.”

Luís Amorim, Vice-President of NELFA, adds, “The Commissioner is quite right in his analysis, also with regard to deeply rooted phobias against LGBTIQ* people. The recognition of same-sex partnerships is not just symbolic; it promotes the well-being of thousands of children and their parents. And no: granting rights and benefits to same-sex couples does not take anything away from different-sex couples who already have access to them.”

Download this press release as a PDF here


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Get involved in the International Family Equality Day (IFED): 

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For further contacts:
Maria von Känel – President: +41 79 611 06 71;

Luís Amorim – Vice-President: +32 473 76 50 70

NELFA aisbl

La Maison Arc-en-ciel asbl – Rue du Marché au Charbon 42 – 1000 Brussels – BELGIUM

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Brussels, 21 February 2017


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©2021 NELFA aisbl 845937097 - Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations - Greetings to all LGBTIQ* families, friends, activists out there.

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