In a joint statement, gay organisations on Curaçao, Aruba and Sint Maarten have called on their islands’ parliamentarians, government leaders, and leaders of the community to open up marriage for same-sex couples. These gay organisations are partners of COC Netherlands in the Pink Orange Alliance project.
The gay organisations FOKO (Curaçao), ALFA (Aruba) and SAFE (Sint Maarten) say in their joint statement that the opening up of civil marriage is the only acceptable outcome in the LGBT fight for equal rights on the so-called CAS islands (Curaçao, Aruba, Sint Maarten) within the Kingdom of The Netherlands.
The organisations note that the fight for LGBTI equality is connected to the fight against slavery, forced labour, colonialism, and equal rights for women; “Gay rights are human rights, and the right to get married is a universal human right.” The organisation is explicitly referring to the verdict of the American Federal Supreme Court, which opened up marriage to same-sex couples some months earlier.
In the statement it is pointed out that the ideal of marriage – living together in love and mutual responsibility – is universal and is shared by every individual. But for LGBTIs on the CAS islands, the possibility to get legal recognition and protection of their relationship is lacking, even though this is now possible in other parts of the Kingdom.
The organisations point out that this appeal expresses the deepest wishes and desires of the gay community on the CAS islands. “This contradicts the much used argument that same-sex marriage is something that is forced upon the islands by The Netherlands.” Opening up marriage is something that cannot be postponed because society is ‘not ready’ for it. It is also not about forcing churches to recognise same-sex marriage. We only ask to legalise same-sex civil marriage.