Taiwan Float in NY Pride Parade Celebrates LGBTQ Movement in Taiwan

The New York Taiwanese Community Crowdfunds to Celebrate the Recent Ruling on Same-sex Marriage by Taiwan’s Constitutional Court

To celebrate this historic ruling, Mr. Chi Chia-Wei, the gay activist who filed the lawsuit that Taiwan’s Constitutional Court recently ruled on, has been invited to New York to participate in this year’s Gay Pride Parade, which will take place on June 25th. A crowdfunding campaign is now underway to raise funds to cover all fees and expenses for 1) Mr. Chi’s visit and 2) a Taiwan float at this year’s New York Gay Pride Parade. This is only the third year that there will be a Taiwan float at the Gay Pride Parade so the NY Taiwanese American community is seeking additional support.

The New York Gay Pride Parade is one of the largest in the country, and THE place to celebrate the fact that Taiwan is on the forefront of same-sex rights in Asia and the passage of same-sex marriage. To learn more and contribute, visit their GoFundMe campaign: https://www.gofundme.com/TWPrideNYC2017

Get up to speed on the LGBTQ MOVEMENT IN TAIWAN by reading this comprehensive outline of the relevant history, issues, and debate compiled by our friends at Outreach for Taiwan (reprinted by permission of author):

Major Events:

  • On May 24, 2017, Taiwan’s Constitutional Court rules that the ban of same-sex marriage is unconstitutional


  • General support for the LGBTQ community has increased a lot over the years
  • Taiwan has the potential to be the first country in Asia to legalize same sex marriage
  • Marriage equality is not just about marriage
  • Recently, 601 Taiwanese were surveyed and support for legalization was at 40%, oppose at 27%, and undecided at 32% (from the Taiwan Sentinel: https://sentinel.tw/attitudes-gay-taiwan/)
  • President Tsai shown support for marriage equality, but the nation is still divided
  • Taiwan wants to be seen as a beacon for human rights in Asia

Video: Taiwan takes step toward legalizing same-sex marriage

Video: Marriage equality is not just about marriage

Recent Events


The LGBTQ Pride Parade in Taipei

2015- LGBTQ Pride Parade

  • Up to 80,000 people attended it
  • Marches occurred from downtown Taipei to in front of Presidential office

Video: 2016 Taiwan LGBT Pride

2016- Jacques Picoux committed suicide

  • Jacques Picoux was a French professor at the National Taiwan University (NTU) who came to Taiwan in 1979
  • He had a large role with French directors in Taiwan, and even appeared in the movie The Assassin
  • He had a partner for over 35 years; however when his partner had to be hospitalized and was put on life support, he had no say in the decision
  • He couldn’t live life without him, his partner, so he jumped off a building and committed suicide
  • Marriage equality issues resurfaced as a result of this incident, along with the incoming of a new administration

Video: Death of Jacques Picoux (Mandarin)

How is the LGBTQ Community perceived in Taiwan?

Arguments for Support

  • Human rights
  • Family rights
  • Adoption
  • Property ownership
  • Inheritance

Arguments Against

  • Religious values
  • Traditional family values of Taiwan goes against this
  • No offspring produced- This is a large concern in Taiwan that Taiwan already has a very low birth rate
  • Influence of own children- People worry that this influence on children will encourage them to explore and change identities

Main politicians’ stances on the LGBTQ issue

Ma ying jeou LGBTQ

Ma Ying-Jeou at a LGBT civil rights movement event.

  • Ma Ying-Jeou- when he was mayor in 1999 he allocated USD $1 million for gay rights
    • He respected gay marriage, but did not push for legislation
  • 2002: President Chen Shui-bian invited gay rights activists, Gay Right activist Nan Hunter and Human Right Lawyer Michael Bronskito, to meet in the presidential office
  • 2003, Vice-President Annette Lu drafted a basic human rights law that included an article same-sex marriage and adoption rights for gay couples, but it wasn’t passed.
  • 2016- Current President Tsai Ing-Wen posted a video openly supporting gay marriage

Video: President Tsai Ing-Wen on Gay Marriage

Legislation in Taiwan regarding the LGBTQ Community

Three Bills have been proposed by Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights

  1. Marriage Equality Bill
    • Changes definition of marriage to not be limited to just one man and one woman
    • Changing of family law…word changes like
      • Husband and wife → Spouse
      • Father and Mother → Parents
      • Man and Woman → Both parties
    • It has been strongly opposed and strongly supported because of these definition changes
    • Currently going through second read and has been pushed the furthest in the legislative branch
  2. Same-Sex Partnership Bill
    • Discusses what a civil union between two individuals is
    • Sets up a special law for partnerships between two people regardless of gender or sexuality
    • It is also an anti-discriminatory law (regards inheritance, adoption, status, etc.)
    • A similar law was adopted in Germany in 2005
  3. Family Dependent Bill
    • Covers what family rights are given regarding to
      • Visitation rights
      • Consent forms
    • However it doesn’t cover inheritance or adoption
    • Two or more people can register as a family

Legal Proceedings in Taiwan regarding the LGBTQ Community

2004- Gender Equity Education Act

  • Enforced gender equality in schools
  • “To promote substantive gender equality, eliminate gender discrimination, uphold human dignity, and improve and establish education resources and environment of gender equality”
  • Taught about non-traditional gender identification and orientation, however this brought up the nature vs nurture argument for gender identification and orientation


  • Alliance for the Partners’ Rights proposes “Multiple family structure” bill
  • Contains all three drafts, but required legislator to propose to Legislative Yuan

2013- October

  • Marriage Equality bill passes first read and is then sent to Committee of Justice but nothing more happens until 2016 election

2016- November 8

  • Marriage Equality Bill passes with revision to proposal which proposes to allow rights of husband and wife to be applied to couples of same sex marriage

2016- December 26

  • Committee of Justice, Legislative Yuan reviewed and sent drafts to Legislative Yuan Committee for negotiations among political parties:
    • A revision of current Family Law
    • Proposal of adding one chapter on the same sex marriage to the current Family Law
    • A suggestion that any further or other proposals on the issue of same sex marriage be presented to the Legislative Yuan for discussion

2017- May 24

Where the current status stands on Legislation

  • Marriage Equality Act must pass Third Read in end of April or early May
    • After election of new Legislative Yuan members, unfinished processing has to start all over again if not passed by then
  • Revisions of the Family Law are undergoing a Constitution clarification by Grand Judges
  • President Tsai has engaged in talks from supporters and protesters of the Marriage Equality Act

Additional Reads here to learn more:

Taiwan could be first in Asia to back gay marriage

Taiwan’s push to legalise same-sex marriage – BBC News

A progressive history of gay rights in Taiwan

Attitudes Toward Homosexuality and Same-Sex Marriage in Taiwan: It’s More Complex than You Think

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