In a referendum on Sunday, September 25th- 66.9 percent of Cubans; more than 3.9 million approved a sweeping “family law which now gives the green light for same-sex couples to marry and adopt.
The new law will also allow surrogate pregnancies, broader rights for grandparents regarding grandchildren, protection of the elderly, and measures against gender violence, officials told the media on Monday.
The measure which entailed over 400 articles received opposition from 33.1 percent, or about 1.95 million voters, the National Electoral Council, Alina Balseiro Gutiérrez, told official news media.
There had been strong opposition to the reform from the evangelical movement in Cuba as well as thousands of Cubans.
Several religious leaders also expressed concern and worry that the law could weaken nuclear families.
Meanwhile, the director of the National Center for Sex Education, and a promoter of rights for same-sex couples, the daughter of former President Raul Castro, Mariela Castro was a major supporter of the measure.
President Miguel Díaz-Canel, who has promoted the law acknowledged resistance as he voted on Sunday predicting that the majority of Cubans would vote in favor of the code.
On Monday, he tweeted “Love is now the law,” in celebration of the approval of the new measure which has been approved by Cuba’s Parliament, the National Assembly, after years of debate about such reforms.
While Cuba was officially atheist for decades after the 1959 revolution led by Fidel Castro, over the years it has become more tolerant of religions over the past quarter century.