In Havana, approximately 200 individuals gathered on Saturday to march against homophobia and transphobia, commemorating the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Cuba last September.

Accompanied by the lively sounds of traditional conga music, the demonstrators proudly chanted “Socialism yes, homophobia no” as they celebrated the island’s progressive stance on LGBTQ+ rights.

Cuba’s new Family Code, which was approved in September 2022, not only legalised same-sex marriage but also expanded parental rights and surrogacy options, establishing Cuba as a leader in LGBTQ+ rights among Latin American countries.


Since the implementation of the new code, a total of 745 same-sex couples have officially celebrated their unions.

Ana Clara León, a 21-year-old sociology student, expressed her happiness about the changes, stating that the revolutionary process finally recognised the LGBTQ+ community. Signs such as “I am gay, and God loves me” were proudly displayed by demonstrators during the march.

Despite the progress, some topics addressed in the new code remain controversial in Cuba, a society deeply rooted in machismo. The communist government had a history of ostracising homosexuals in the 1960s and 1970s, although they have since made amends. The Catholic Church in the country has also opposed the new code.

Mariela Castro, daughter of former Cuban President Raul Castro and a long-time advocate for LGBTQ+ rights, led the procession under police protection. Yoilan Balon, the national vice-coordinator of the Transcuba network, commented on the event’s significance, stating that it represented the long-awaited opportunity for same-sex couples to embrace their relationships fully.