New Bloom Magazine
Date: May 25, 2019
By:. Brian Hioe
CELEBRATIONS HAVE taken place across Taiwan in the last two days, with Taiwan’s first gay marriages taking place yesterday after the passage of gay marriage into law last week, and a mass wedding banquet held today on Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office. The legal changes legalizing gay marriage took effect yesterday, on May 24th, the original deadline set by the Council of Grand Justices for same-sex marriage to be legalized by in 2017. As Taiwan is the first country to legalize gay marriage in Asia, these are the historic first gay marriages to take place in Asia.
Marriage registrations took place at household registration offices across Taiwan yesterday, with 526 couples registering by 5 PM according to the Ministry of the Interior. This included 185 male couples and 341 female couples. The highest number of marriages took place in New Taipei, followed by Taipei, and then Kaohsiung, which may not surprise given population distribution in Taiwan.
Much media attention has focused on marriage ceremonies held in Taipei, with marriage registrations taking place at the Xinyi District Office and an outdoor wedding party held by the Taipei City Government outside of Taipei 101. This was attended by key figures of Marriage Equality Taiwan, the coalition group of LGBTQ advocacy organizations which was the primary force in the push for legalizing gay marriage, and LGBTQ activist Chi Chia-wei, whose legal case led to the constitutional interpretation by the Council of Grand Justices in 2017 that same-sex marriages needed to be recognized by the government in the next two years, Chi being represented by the lawyers of the Taiwan Alliance for Civil Partnerships. [FULL STORY]