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Family definition to be changed in Romanian Constitution


The constitutional amendment proposition has been filed with the Romanian Senate on Monday, 23rd May 2016




  • The Coalition for Family, an umbrella structure that includes dozens of organisations that promote family values, including Association of Catholic Families Vladimir Ghika, has filed with the Romanian Senate a proposition for the amendment of the Constitution aimed to clarify the definition of a family and the parental rights.

  • The new phrasing proposed for the article 48, par. 1 in the current Constitution reads: “A family is established through the free-willed marriage between one man and one woman, and is based upon their equality and their right and their duty to provide for the raising, the education and the training of the children”.

  • The said constitutional proposition comes with some 3 million supporting signatures gathered nationwide.

  • It is a first time in the history of Romania when such a large number of citizens support an initiative for a constitutional amendment ballot.

  • The Initiative Committee is made of 16 members and includes artists, entrepreneurs, journalists, healthcare professionals and members of the main churches in Romania: Eastern Orthodox, Roman-Catholics, Eastern-Catholics, Baptists and Pentecostals.

    What is next:


  • The Constitutional Court is to sanction the civic action within 60 days.

  • The Parliament will discuss the proposition in both Chambers; the law may pass upon the votes of 2/3 of total members.

  • A national ballot is necessary to change the Constitution. The Initiative Committee would like to have it together with the parliamentary elections scheduled for this fall.

    Inspired by a first-time initiative coordinated by 16 men and women, 3 million Romanian citizens have signed to ask for the modification of the article 48, paragraph 1 in the Constitution so that the family would be based on “the marriage of one man and one woman” rather than “a marriage between spouses”. Moreover, the new phrasing is aimed to enhance the parental right to raise and educate their children by their own values and beliefs.

    The supporting signatures, gathered to six times more than the legal minimum, have been validated by the city halls of the signatories’ residences, and will be submitted on Monday to the Romanian Senate. The Constitutional Court must provide an answer within 60 days, after which the draft law will be discussed in the Parliament. The Initiative Committee wants to have the national ballot held together with the parliamentary elections scheduled for this fall.

    The signatures have been gathered through the efforts of more than 80,000 volunteers belonging to all the Christian churches, from the villages to the cities, from all professions and social categories.

    The mission of the Coalition for Family is long aimed. Alongside this constitutional project, there is a set of policies aimed to strengthen the family, improve child-birth and reduce the state-reliance of the families. All these propositions, so-called 50 proposals of family policies for Romania, are to be negotiated with the political parties and the candidates who will run for the coming elections in order to have them implemented in the next legislature.

    The Coalition for Family has been active for some years within the debates of the Romanian society and also took an active part in the parliamentary discussion on family.

    A similar initiative has been launched within the European Union, named “Mother, Father and Children”, aimed to protect the family in its natural understanding: the spouses (being one man and one woman) and their children. Five family/marriage-related referenda took place during the last five years in Croatia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Ireland, and Armenia.


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