It’s Pride Month, and it only seems fitting that more and more good news is coming in from other parts of the world. On the same day that Botswana overturned its own anti-gay laws, Ecuador has sided with two gay couples who petitioned for the right to be married, which in effect legalizes same-sex marriage in the country.

Five judges voted to approve same-sex marriage and extend it to the whole country. The four judges who voted against it said this change to the country’s constitution should be decided and approved by the country’s National Assembly.

Speaking to the AFP, the Palka Foundation’s Christian Paula said that Ecuador was now “more egalitarian.” The Palka Foundation provided legal assistance and advice to 10 same-sex couples seeking to marry in Ecuador.

“It means that Ecuador is more egalitarian. It is more just than yesterday, that it recognizes that human rights must be for all people without discrimination,” said Paula.

Ecuador is now the fourth South American country to legalize same-sex marriage, following Columbia, Brazil, and Argentina.

The past few months has seen a number of historic advances being made around the world with regards to how the LGBTQ community is treated in the legal system. Last month, Hong Kong struck down laws against gay sex. Brazil also declared transphobia and homophobia illegal, despite the fact that it is headed by a virulently homophobic president in the form of Jair Bolsonaro. Taiwan also became the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage.

Stateside, advances have also been made in the fight against conversion therapy, with Massachusetts and Maine banning conversion therapy for minors in April and May of this year, respectively.

Congratulations to the LGBTQ community in Ecuador for having won the right to marry!

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