A citizen’s initiative to have the Finnish Parliament consider passing equal marriage laws has collected the most signatures in Finnish history, forcing lawmakers to look at the issue again.
Finland’s Parliament will consider the issue of same-sex marriage after supporters gathered 162,000 signatures in favor of it in the Scandinavian nation of 5.4 million people.
The figure represents the largest number of signatures collected in favor of a citizen’s initiative in Finland and only 50,000 signatures, or less than a third of 162,000, were needed for the Parliament to have to consider the initiative.
The same-sex marriage citizens initiative beat the 50,000 signatures in its first day in March last year.
Organizers had hoped to gather 250,000 signatures to send a strong message to lawmakers
Finland’s Tahdon2013 (I Do 2013) campaign released new polling yesterday showing 58% of Finns support the legalization of same-sex marriage while only 34% of Finns are opposed, with support among voters for Finland’s Green Party and Social Democrats in the mid to low 70’s.
The Finnish Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee voted narrowly not to consider a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in February but thanks to the up-swell of public support lawmakers will have to look at the issue again.
Finland is the only Scandinavian country left that does not allow same-sex couples to wed – although it has allowed same-sex couples to enter into registered partnerships since 2002 and has allowed same-sex spouses to adopt their partner’s biological children since 2009.