In the Central American nation of nearly 6 million, constitutional amendments can only pass when two consecutive legislators approve them by a two-thirds majority. So when El Salvador’s lawmakers approved an amendment banning same-sex marriage in April, the nation’s gays were worried. Fast-forward a few months, and the outlook is much rosier.
Conservative lawmakers (yes, backed by the Catholic community) failed to score the two-thirds vote they needed to approve either a same-sex marriage ban or a gay adoption ban (measures introduced back in 2006 and approved in April), meaning both attempts at limiting gay rights have been shot down. The left-leaning ruling party, Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front, opposed the bans.
So where do LGBT rights stand in El Salvador? There’s no recognition of marriage or civil unions; gay rights advocates there are urging legislators to enact recognition of the latter. And while anti-discrimination laws include sexual orientation, anecdotal evidence suggests those protections are rarely enforced.