Cuba’s LGBTQ community celebrates same-sex marriage

Cuba's LGBTQ community celebrates same-sex marriage

HAVANA, May 14  Some 200 people paraded in Havana on Saturday to the rhythm of the conga, a popular Cuban dance, against homophobia and transphobia and celebrated the same-sex marriage approved on the island seven months ago.

Shouting “Socialism yes, homophobia no,” this community celebrated the approval in September of the Family Code, advanced legislation that has allowed the legal union of at least 745 same-sex couples throughout the country, according to official figures.

“It was a debt that the revolutionary process owed” to the Cuban LGBT community, Ana Clara León, 21, a sociology student, told AFP, who paraded with a rainbow flag tied around her waist and wearing a purple scarf around her neck.

“I am gay and God loves me” read a sign carried by a group of men, surrounded by transgender people moving their hips to the percussion of drums.Cuba's LGBTQ community celebrates same-sex marriage


The demonstration traveled a few blocks in the central neighborhood of Vedado, to concentrate on a party inside a recreational center near the sea.

The walk, supervised by police and state security agents, was led by Mariela Castro, daughter of the revolutionary leader Raúl Castro and promoter of the Family Code. As well as by Lis Cuesta, wife of President Miguel Díaz-Canel.

This new norm also allows legal recognition of several fathers and mothers, in addition to biological ones, as well as non-profit surrogacy, while adding other rights that favor children, the elderly and the disabled

The legalization of equal marriage has been a sensitive issue in a society still marked by machismo that was exacerbated in the 1960s and 1970s, when the government ostracized many homosexuals or sent them to militarized agricultural labor camps.

Yoilan Balón, the national vice coordinator of the Transcuba network, also celebrated this achievement. “It was something that all gay people were waiting for, that they wanted to consummate their relationship,” she said.

“It is the conga of pride, we Cubans are a lot of parties, conga, fun and that is how we can express our diversity,” said Diana Peña, 31, next to her and responsible for the participation of young people in Transcuba.