Tag Archives: Same-sex partners

In(di)visible Citizenship: Same-sex Partners in European Union Law

Lina Papadopoulou

This paper aims at highlighting the inadequacy of two draft European Directives on the family reunification of same-sex partners. The category “family members” is defined in a sense wider than in existing law to include unmarried partners. This applies only, however, if the national law of the Member State concerned treats unmarried partners as being equal to married ones. The draft Directives generate no harmonisation in these cases: they reinforce the principle of equal treatment between nationals and other EU citizens but allow for differentiated treatment in different Member States. Under such a provision, European citizenship appears to supersede national barriers but to tolerate discrimination based on sex and sexuality. Homosexual and bisexual Europeans remain invisible in the law and European citizenship remains divisible when it comes to preferences related to the personal and intimate life of individuals.