Daniel Berezowsky and Jaime Chávez Alor have become the first gay couple to have a marriage performed outside Mexico recognized by Mexican law.
The consul general of Mexico officiated the marriage at his Manhattan residence before approximately 25 family members and friends of the couple.
The marriage is a major victory for Mexicans living abroad who wish to marry a person of the same sex and have their nuptials recognized by their home country.
Berezowsky, a communications specialist at human rights organization Shift, and Chávez Alor, a lawyer for the Vance Center for International Justice. Both live in New York.
“We’re happy, because we knew we weren’t the first same-sex couple to try to get married here, but we’re the first one that was successful,” Chávez Alor told NBC News.
Shortly after the two men tied the knot, the Mexican consulate released a congratulatory statement wishing the “happy couple” success and highlighting the relevance of the event, which it said “paves the way for Mexican couples of the same sex who wish to legally join in marriage at an embassy or consulate of our country.”
The two men, who are both Mexican citizens in their early 30s, spent more than six months attempting to obtain a marriage license from the General Consulate of Mexico in New York, but they were initially denied. Although same-sex couples can legally marry in Mexico City and several of the country’s 31 states, same-sex marriages are not legal according to Mexico’s federal code.
“We thought it was discriminatory and a violation of our human rights,” Chávez Alor told NBC News. “We had every right to get married.”
The couple filed a legal challenge with a federal court in Mexico, and on Oct. 19, they prevailed. The decision paves the way for other same-sex Mexican couples living abroad to get married.
Then came the fun part.
“Everything went so fast,” Chávez Alor said of the wedding planning. “But we were very happy that this was finally happening. After six years of being in a relationship, we knew that this was the step we wanted to take.”
Chávez Alor said he and Berezowsky said they now hope their victory will inspire Mexican lawmakers to view same-sex marriage as a federal issue.
“During past elections, every time candidates were questioned about same-sex marriage, they said that it was a state decision and that it didn’t have relevancy,” Chávez Alor explained. “But this isn’t true, because there are cases like ours. It was very important for us to show that same-sex marriage should be on the federal agenda.”
Source: NBC News