In a historic move for a Chile, police officer Hugo Alcalde entered into a civil union with his partner, Jose Luis Valdes, on April 20. Alcalde is the first police officer to ever take advantage of the new law, which passed last year in Chile.
While celebrating his new civil union in the capital city of Santiago, Alcalde told Reuters, "To let everyone know that you’re gay isn’t easy, but if you have the support of friends, family, and the people that you know, there’s no problem." He added, "It’s a weight off your shoulders."
The law allowing civil partnerships went into effect in October 2015 after sitting in legislative limbo for years. According to The Guardian, Chile's Congress discussed the bill for more than a decade before President Michelle Bachelet signed it.
Although this union is a huge step forward for LGBT rights in Chile, Rolando Jimenez, the president of Movhil, the Gay Liberation and Integration Movement, told The Guardian, "The civil union doesn’t end our struggle. We’re demanding same-sex marriage. We’re going to request for the measures stuck in congress to be revived."