Letter of support for the organization of the marriage referendum in Romania

We, the undersigned organisations,

(to be signed not later than May 1st, 2017)

taking note of the citizens’ initiative prompted by the Coalition for Family in Romania, and signed by 3 milion citizens,

highlighting that this represents the strongest popular support for any such initiative in the modern democratic history of Romania,

taking into account that the initiative was unanimously approved by the Constitutional Court of Romania on 20 July 2016,

stressing that the initiative is fully in accordance with the settled jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights, of the Court of Justice of the European Union, and the positions of the Venice Commission,

on the basis of article 2 of the Constitution of Romania, which mentions that “national sovereignty appertains to the Romanian people, who express it through… referendum.”

Note with great concern the undue, illegitimate and unjustified delay in the organization of the marriage referendum in Romania. Since its unanimous approval by the Constitutional Court of Romania on 20 July, the citizens’ initiative has had little progress in the Romanian Parliament. The fact that both the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of Romania declined competence to assess the citizens’ initiative is an unprecedented situation in a healthy, democratic society. What is more, the Romanian Parliament’s lack of decision on the matter has delayed the process in a manner which effectively blocks the democratic expression on this important and timely topic.

Therefore, we call upon the Romanian Senate and the Chamber of Deputies:

  • to jointly approve the citizens’ initiative, given that all their committees have already given their positive avis on the matter
  • to take action to hasten/expedite the marriage referendum, which needs to be organized before the summer parliamentary vacation.

A lack of action in that direction is a blatant disrespect of 3 million voices that have given their written consent for a cause in which they believe.

It is in the name of democracy and transparency that we urge you to give course to the request of three million Romanian citizens and to prioritize the organization of the marriage referendum.