針對公政公約問題清單編號第66題(公政公約第23條)所提平行回應

伴侶盟快訊!
台灣簽署聯合國兩公約之後的第一次國家人權報告的國際審查即將於2/25正式展開,伴侶盟除了已於去年十一月提出中英文版影子報告,並預計將針對多元性別組織家庭權利議題(包括,但不僅限同性婚姻合法的議題)向來臺進行審查的委員們於會議中提出我們的人權觀察與建議。

國際審查委員閱讀了伴侶盟去年所提的影子報告之後,已針對公政公約第23條家庭權之規定,提出了編號第66號的議題要求我國政府回應,另外也特別表達了希望能就LGBT人權議題與台灣相關的非營利組織進行面對面的討論與問答。

我國政府對於編號第66號議題的官方回應請參見連結檔案第191-192頁http://www.humanrights.moj.gov.tw/public/Attachment/3281633144.pdf

針對國際審查委員所提公政公約編號第66號議題以及我國官方對此議題的回應,伴侶盟已撰擬書面平行回應,中英文版並陳如下,期許我國政府盡速立法保障多元性別人士組織家庭的權利(包括但不限於同性婚姻合法化),停止一再以委外研究案作為延宕立法的藉口。我們相信透過身分關係的合法保障,將有助於終止、減少社會歧視,也才能落實多元性別者行使公約的各項相關權利。

針對公政公約問題清單編號第66題(公政公約第23條)所提平行回應

回應者:台灣伴侶權益推動聯盟(註1)

1.台灣現行的法律不允許同性婚姻,也不保障非婚同居的伴侶(異性或同性伴侶)。十年一次的國民普查將「有偶」與「同居」列為同一個項目,因此調查結果不但無法呈現非婚同居人口的人數,也無法包含國民多元的性傾向與性別認同。

2.由於現行台灣法律僅保障「異性戀婚姻」關係,其他形式的家庭均不受法律承認與保障,因此同性伴侶、非婚同居的異性伴侶不但面臨著無所不在的社會污名與歧視,在行使公約的許多權利上也都會遇到重大困難,事實上,只要政策措施是以「婚姻與親屬身份」為基礎,多元性別的家庭成員就會全數被排除,台灣法令中有數百項乃至上千項的規定是以婚姻或親屬關係為基礎的權利、福利或法律地位,多元性別伴侶因無法結婚,異性伴侶選擇長期同居不婚,他們的身分關係與相關權利就幾乎毫無保障,此除國家人權報告書所已自承之項目外,還包括財產繼承權、婚假、遺屬津貼、結婚及喪葬補助津貼、社會保險資格…等等。

3.針對台灣政府機關對於公政公約問題清單編號第66題的官方回應,伴侶盟要特別指出,國民普查的主責機關是行政院主計處,而婚姻、家庭法律制度的主責機關是法務部,伴侶盟以上所指出來的問題存在已久,這兩個問題長期未能獲得解決與「行政院性別平等處成立時間尚短」根本無關。

我們建議
(1) 國家應盡速調查「非婚同居人口」的社會現狀,在此項目下,並應呈現國民多元的性傾向與性別認同以彌補既有國民普查的缺失(不應該等到2020年下一次的國民普查才補救)。
(2) 國家應盡速立法保障多元性別人士組織家庭的權利(包括但不限於同性婚姻合法化),不應一再以委外研究案作為延宕立法的藉口。透過身分關係的合法保障,將有助於終止、減少社會歧視,也才能落實多元性別者行使公約的各項相關權利。

註1: 執筆者:台灣伴侶權益推動聯盟理事長許秀雯律師

Supplemental Response to Item 66 on the List of Issues Concerning the ICCPR (Article 23 of the ICCPR):

Presented by: Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights (TAPCPR)*

1. Taiwan law does not permit same-sex marriage, nor does it provide protection for unmarried cohabiting partners, whether they be heterosexual or homosexual. However, the national census conducted by the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) once each decade continues to list “co-habitat” and “with spouse” under the same heading, which fails to reflect the reality of unmarried co-habitating households in society and recognize the diversity of sexual orientations and gender identities in Taiwan.

2. Given that Taiwan’s current legal regime only provides protection for relationships based on heterosexual marriage, other types of intimate relationships and families currently existing in society fail to receive recognition and protection under the law. Therefore, homosexual partnerships and unmarried heterosexual co-habiting partners are the subjects of ever-present stigmatism and discrimination. Also, there would be significant obstacles in exercising the rights discussed in the ICCPR and, any policy measures based on marriage or familial relationship will, by definition, exclude all sexually diverse family members. Under Taiwan law, several hundred or even thousands of types of benefits, legal rights and statuses are based on “marriage or family status” and, therefore, sexual diverse partners cannot marry and must co-habitat with essentially no protection for their relationship status or the accompanying rights. In addition to those items specifically mentioned in Taiwan’s Official Human Rights Report, there are numerous areas where these individuals lack protection including the spousal right of inheritance, marital leave, survivor’s allowance, marriage and funeral allowances, qualification for social insurance and others.

3. Regarding the ROC (Taiwan) official response to Item 66 on the List of Issues Concerning the ICCPR, the TAPCPR wishes to point out that government agency responsible for the national census is the DGBAS, while the Ministry of Justice is responsible for laws related to marriage and family. Given that the longstanding nature of the issues raised by the TAPCPR, the government’s response that the Executive Yuan Department of Gender Equality has only been established for a short period of time seems unhelpful and irrelevant.

Recommendations :

a) We ask that the government make a timely and determined effort to investigate and ascertain the true status of unmarried cohabiting persons in Taiwan society and make necessary revisions to the national census both to correct any deficiencies and to reflect the sexual orientation and gender identity of Taiwan’s citizens. Further, any such revisions should not wait until the next national census in 2020 before being implemented.

b) The government should enact laws to protect the rights of alternative partnerships and diverse families without delay (including, but not limited to, the legalization of gay marriage). Furthermore, any delays in codifying these inalienable human rights should not be blamed on the need for further study and research. Only through legal protection of one’s relationship status can we help to reduce and eliminate social prejudice, and thus fully realize the various rights discussed in the ICCPR.

*This document was originally drafted in Chinese, by Victoria Hsu (Attorney at law, President of TAPCPR), and translated into English by Mark McVicar (Senior Paralegal at Winkler Partners) .

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