Taiwan delegation promotes marriage equality at Tokyo Rainbow Pride Parade

TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) - Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights (TAPCPR), a same-sex marriage advocacy group, several LGBTQ civil rights organisations, and 10 newly elected officials attended the Tokyo Rainbow Pride Parade in Tokyo on April 28-29.

The group used rainbow lanterns and the Chinese symbol of “double happiness” in front of the rainbow colors to promote the upcoming legalization of same-sex marriage in Taiwan slated on May 24.

Speaking at the parade, the participants said: “We are from Taiwan. You are welcome to Taiwan and join our pride parade!”

TAPCPR and Taiwan AIDS Foundation, along with 10 councilors and legislators, including Huang Yu-fen, Lin Liang-chun, Lin Ying-meng, Huang Jie, Liao Yu-hsien, Lin Yi-ying and Chen Wei-chung from the New Power Party, Chang Chi-hao from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Miao Po-ya from Social Democratic Party and Chiu Wei-jie, attended the event in Tokyo.

Ahead of the legalization of same-sex marriage slated on May 24, several city governments have allowed registration for same-sex marriage. Against such backdrop, the slogan for the Taiwan delegation at the Tokyo Rainbow Pride Parade was “Taiwan supports marriage equality.”

Long-term LGBT rights activist, Chi Chia-wei, whose petition of the constitutional interpretation resulted in the ruling of Constitutional Interpretation No. 748, also attended the parade along with his attorneys, Victoria Hsu and Chen Ming-yen.

During the event, Taiwan’s representatives shared their experience in communicating and interacting with conservatives with their Japanese counterparts.

Both sides had a discussion on LGBT-friendly policies as both Taiwan and Japan allowed same-sex partners registration prior to the adoption of same-sex marriage. Representatives from both sides acknowledged that the registration policy has helped to improve the views of officials and the general public towards the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) community.

The delegation also held an exhibition on the history of LGBTQ rights advocacy in Taiwan at the Taiwan booth, highlighting the progress made to LGBTQ rights to Japanese viewers, including marriage equality, prevention of HIV/AIDS, promotion of patients’ rights, fight against discrimination, and recognition of transgender rights.

Organizers also invited Japanese participants to join the Pride Parades and events to be held in 11 various cities in Taiwan, Taiwan students served as tour guides to introduce the history of LGBTQ rights advocacy to the visitors.