In a symbolic move, a leading LGBT organization in Italy on Friday will hold a mass gay wedding to demonstrate for marriage equality in the Southern European country.
According to a statement from Bologna’s Arcigay, the group announced the symbolic gay marriage ceremony to continue to push for LGBT rights in the country.
It also coincides with the opening of the new Italian Parliament’s session and the group is planning to “marry” over a few dozen couples in order to continue to pressure lawmakers to create LGBT equality, stating that the country lacks “pro-gay laws.”
Although not officially recognized by the government, as Italy does not permit same-sex marriages nor civil unions, the group said in a statement that “Italy elected a new Parliament that looks like having the number for a new season of pro-gay laws.”
They added that despite the optimism, “we still don’t have a new government and the new Parliament is really unstable. This is why we are worried.”
LGBT issues have come to the forefront in Italy after the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI last month and a number of reports of gay activities in The Vatican, although 429Magazine could not confirm these “rumors.”
Still, the positive public attention on LGBT issues has given rise to hopes in Italy that change is not far from coming to fruition.
Vicenzo, a 24-year-old graduate student in Genoa, told 429Magazine that he would attend the “ceremonies” in order to show support.
“I believe Italy is changing and this is a positive step to show the country that the LGBT community does not have evil intentions and is part of what it means to be Italian,” the gay activist said.