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Same-sex civil union divides Italy as a new law is debated in Parliament

This week the Italian Parliament will vote on a law that, for the first time in history, would regulate the homosexual civil unions in Italy. Giulia and Ilaria are a lesbian couple with a new born child, living as a family even though they don't have any civil right recognized. Giulia and Ilaria campaign for the LTGB rights as the debate heats up and divides Italy. Giulia and Ilaria, together with their eight-months-daughter Agnese, participate to the LTGB demos held in central Rome last weeks while. on the other hand, half-million of Catholics and right-wing citizens protest against the civil unions bill. Mrs Monica Cirinnà, sponsor of the proposal, speaks to the Italian Senate during the politic debate. The lawmakers are expected to take a decision during the month of February.

Video information
Produced by Malou Visco
Directed by Federico Fornaro, Nikolai Burger, Francesca Tosarelli
Video Language en
Produced Feb 08, 2016
Published Feb 09, 2016
Production Company Raw-News
Distributor Raw-News

Full Description


As Italy is preparing to debate a bill that for the first time would allow the same-sex civil unions, LTGB take the streets of Rome demanding their rights.

Giulia and Ilaria are a Rome based lesbian couple with a new born daughter, Agnese. They consider themselves a family and live as such but according to the Italian law they are not, as Italy's legislation does not recognize any form of same-sex civil union. On this issue thousands of people gathered in central Rome on January 23rd to support a bill currently discussed in the Italian Senate which would legalize same-sex civil unions for the first time in the country. The demonstration named "wake up Italy" urges to regulate and extend the civil rights to LTGB people.

Despite their domestic family life looks like anyone else's, they say it is tough to keep up with the daily practical obstacles and face the fact that their family formally does not exit: Giulia, as ​the non-biological parent, needs a paper to pick her daughter at school ​and is not even allowed to visit her if in hospital. Italy is the only western country where no form of same-sex union or marriage for gay and lesbians is legalized. The bill currently debated would extend to homosexual couples with civil unions - and unmarried heterosexual couples - some of the rights they would have under marriage, including the so called step child- adoption. ​This highly debated provision would allow a gay couple to adopt a child as long as one parent is biological.Mrs. Monica Cirinnà, the sponsor of the bill, says it is urgent and necessary as Italy is the last of all European countries in matters of civil rights.On January 30th an estimated half-million people gathered in Rome's largest arena in a rally named "Family Day" to defend the traditional family and protest against the same bill. The lingering influence of the Roman Church is evident and the rally strongly expresses the deeply Catholic Italian public. Some argue the bill would dismantle the traditional family.

As the lawmakers are expected to make a final decision on the bill on the second week of February, Giulia and Ilaria as many other LGBT will continue their fight in the hope for Italy to break the long standing silence on the issue and see their relationship eventually recognized.




Giulia di Croce and Ilaria Paolasso are an Italian homosexual couple based in Rome. They met eight years ago and got married in Oslo, Norway in 2015. In the same year they decide to have their first child, Agnese, conceived by Ilaria through IVF in Norway and then born in Rome. Agnese is now eight-months old and since then they have been living together as a family. Their daily life includes all the typical parents' duty and responsibility: while Giulia feeds they, Ilaria plays toys and distract her daughter to make her laugh. Despite their domestic life looks like any one other's, for the Italian law this family simply does not exist. In fact according to the Italian current legislation, they are both single women and Agnese only has one single parent. Giulia and Ilaria constantly experience the difficulties of living without any form of marriage so they actively campaign for the gay equality. As the debate on the homosexual civil unions is now heating up, they say it is particularly important to step up and demonstrate for their rights so they participated to the LTGB demonstration held in Rome. Thousands of people gathered e to support a bill to allow same-sex civil unions currently discussed in the Italian Senate.

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