Prague, Czech Republic – On Saturday, several hundred people marched in the center of Prague to voice their support for the “traditional family” values and model.
Organized by the ‘Alliance for Family’ organization, the march, that started from Palacky square and finished on Kampa island, was joined by representatives of the church and a number of Czech politicians from different parties, including Jaroslav Kubera (ODS), Ivana Nevludova (ex-SPD), Lubomir Volny (ex-SPD), Pavel Zacek (ODS), Patrik Nacher (ANO) and Jaroslav Foldyna (CSSD).
“Twenty years ago, none of us would have thought to put on a t-shirt saying ‘We know what family is'”, Marek Vyborny (KDU-CSL), told the crowd. “The family means mom, dad, children, grandma, grandpa. We really need to repeat it over and over again”.
Protesters gathered in the center of Prague on Saturday afternoon to voice their support for traditional family values and their belief that a family can only be built on the foundations of a marriage between a man and a woman.
The march was organized ahead of discussions in the Czech Parliament on a cross-partisan bill on marriage equality that could potentially give homosexuals the same rights as heterosexual couples and turn the Czech Republic into the first post-communist country to legalize same-sex marriage.
Most polls show that a majority of the population is in favour of legalizing marriage for homosexual couples.
Along with the Saturday march, supporters of the ‘traditional family’ also circulated a petition, signed by around 100,000 people, calling for the government not to allow same-sex marriage and to include the definition of marriage as the union between a man and a woman in the Constitution.
The petition also calls for Prime Minister Andrej Babis to block the ratification of the Council of Europe’s Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and domestic violence, better known as the ‘Istanbul Convention’, a non-binding international treaty that also addresses gender equality and has sparked worries among conservative circles in Central Europe.
The same week, ‘Jsme Fer’, a local NGO that has spearheaded efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in the Czech Republic, also organized a number of events to step up pressure on politicians and urge them to finally hold, after months of postponing, a vote on the marriage equality amendment.