As of midnight on May 26, Costa Rica became the first country in Central America ( and the 28th United Nations member state ) to legalize same-sex marriage after a groundbreaking court ruling came into effect.
Reuters reported that the country's constitutional court ruled in August 2018 that a ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional; it then gave parliament 18 months to legislate or the provision would be automatically nullified.
"Costa Rica is celebrating today: marriage equality has become a reality in the countrythe first one in Central America!" said the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association ( ILGA ) in a tweet.
"Today, Costa Rica has made history, bringing marriage equality to Central America for the first time," said Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David in a statement that Windy City Times obtained. "Costa Rica's LGBTQ community has worked tirelessly for years to make today a reality. This victory is theirs, and it inspires the entire global LGBTQ community to continue fighting to move equality forward.
"Now, other signatory countries of the American Convention on Human Rights should follow in Costa Rica's footsteps and adopt the Inter-American Court's guidance by establishing marriage equality. Today is a day for celebration, but also a reminder of the work we still must do around the world in our global fight for recognition and inclusion."
Costa Rica is also the sixth country in Latin America to allow same-sex marriage, following Argentina, Ecuador, Brazil, Colombia and Uruguay; parts of Mexico have also legalized it.