1996 in LGBT Rights

In 1996, there were 33 recorded legal changes made affecting LGBT people. In the previous year, there were 22 changes made and 20 in the following year. A total of 275 legal changes were made in the 1990s.

  • December 13
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    Homosexuality has always been legal in Burkina Faso. The date is the date of publication of the current penal code.
  • November 26
    Same-sex marriage becomes unrecognized.
    Article 32 of the constitution defines marriage to be between a man and a woman.
  • November 6
    LGBT discrimination becomes no protections.
    Homosexuality is illegal and as such not covered as a ground to have protection against discrimination.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes no protections.
    No
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes no protections.
    No
  • October 16
    Same-sex marriage becomes not legal.
    State Statute defining marriage as between one man and one woman
  • August 29
    Same-sex marriage becomes unrecognized, only same-sex marriage official.
    There is a ban on same sex marriage
  • August 24
    Same-sex marriage becomes not legal.
    Mississippi governor ordered an executive order to ban same sex marriage
  • June 28
    LGBT discrimination becomes no protections.
    No protections afforded
  • June 1
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Federal human rights law applies directly to only federal government employment and employers which fall under federal jurisdiction. Gender identity is only implicitly protected under interpretation of the law by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal. Attempts have been made to have gender identity and gender expression added as protected classes to both the Canadian Human Rights Act and Criminal Code, though none of these attempts so far has been successful. Provincial human rights acts are separate, but Supreme Court precedent exists for requiring provinces to protect the same classes as the Canadian Human Rights Act. At this time all provinces protect against employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Of the provinces only Ontario has explicit protection on the basis of both gender identity and gender expression in its human rights code, though several provide implicit protections on the basis of gender identity or "transsexualism" under the category of "sex" or "gender".
  • May 15
    Same-sex marriage becomes unrecognized.
    Tennessee Act of 1996 define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
  • May 8
    Same-sex marriage becomes unrecognized.
    Several provisions within the constitution, the family law and the civil code points to the definition of a marriage as being a union between a man and a woman.
  • Homosexuals serving openly in military becomes legal.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
  • April 26
    Same-sex marriage becomes civil unions.
    Recognized Denmark's registered partnership law on this date.
  • April 24
    Same-sex adoption becomes illegal.
    In Andorra, same-sex couples are not allowed to adopt because the adoption law only recognises this possibility for heterosexual couples.
  • March 1
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
  • January 24
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Gender reassignment surgeries are legal in Singapore, and in 1973 the government allowed patients to change their identity cards. This change implicitly recognized marriages that included an individual that had undergone surgery. However, later in 1990, such marriages were deemed illegal after a marriage between a woman and a transgender man (Lim Ying v Hiok Kian Ming Eric) was declared void by the High Court. In 1996, MP Abdullah Tarmugi made an announcement that individuals who have undergone surgery could marry someone of the opposite sex.
  • January 1
    Same-sex adoption becomes single only.
    No
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Currently there are no law protecting for LGBT community outside the labor market. There is protection against discrimination at court in the criminal code however.
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    Outlined in BC Human Rights Code
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    Outlined in BC Human Rights Code
  • Right to change legal gender becomes ambiguous.
    Legislation about the procedures necessary for name changes refers to the obligation to get a final court decision before changing one’s sex. However, law and procedure are unclear beyond this and consequently people seeking to change their sex undergo a long and painful process.
  • Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Since 1996, it has been possible for someone who has gone through sex reassignment surgery to legally change their sex in their official documents.
  • January 1
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    No
  • (date unknown)
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes banned (1-year deferral).
    The Red Cross controls blood donations in Australia and it has a ban on MSMs active in the last year
  • Equal age of consent becomes equal.
  • January 1
    Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    No
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    prohibition can be found in the Constitution (since 1994) and also in the Labour Relations Act of 1995, in force 11 November 1996 (http://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=70985); in the Employment Equity Act of 1998 (www. info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=70714; and in the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000 (www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=68207)
  • January 1
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Labour code affords sexual orientation as a ground for protection
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Under Icelandic Criminal Code.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    No
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Under Icelandic Law.

LGBT Organizations Founded in 1996

  • Equality Pennsylvania FaviconEquality Pennsylvania
    Equality Pennsylvania is the commonwealth’s leading organization advancing equality and opportunity for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Pennsylvanians.
  • ILGA-Europe FaviconILGA-Europe
    Global
    ILGA-Europe is the European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans & Intersex Association ILGA-Europe works for equality and human rights for lesbian, gay…