Family and Parental Rights
A Family is a Family
In addition to the long fight for marriage equality, same-sex couples also had to fight for equal rights as partners and as parents. While Canadian law may not have explicitly discriminated against LGBTQ couples, the silence was just as damaging—and the lack of legal provisions for same-sex couples affected the relationships themselves. Since marriage was considered between husband and wife, gay and lesbian partners were essentially treated as if they were single in legal matters. They had no rights as couples and had to fight to gain legal and medical benefits for their partners, such as partner inclusion in pension plans and hospital visitation rights.
The Right to Adopt
Part of the fight for equal rights for same-sex couples was adoption. This included full adoption by both parents, as well as in cases where one person is the biological parent and their partner wishes to adopt the child as a co-parent. As the following videos show, same-sex couples faced various ordeals in not being legally recognized as partners and as parents, such as finding fertility clinics that would help them conceive, and living with the fear that their child could be taken away if something happened to their partner.