The views on same-sex marriage and support of the LGBTQ community may change drastically depending on where you go. Many countries are moving towards a progressive future where people are allowed to openly love who they want. But many others are standing firm in their beliefs rooted in homophobia, like Haiti.

NewNowNext reports that Haitian officials not only voted to ban same-sex marriage, but agreed to punish any “parties, co-parties and accomplices” with up to 3 years in prison and an $8,000 fine.

“Although the state is secular, it is people of faith who are the majority,” Senate President Youri Latortue insisted. “A country has to focus on its values and traditions. Some people in other countries see it differently, but in Haiti, that’s how it’s seen.”

The bill hasn’t officially been passed into law yet, but it’s expected to make it through Chamber of Deputies with very little pushback and basically be a done deal already.

“This text divides our society, it reinforces prejudices and discrimination. It’s really a shame,” said Charlot Jeudy of the Kouraj Group. “[Politicians] know very well that this will bring much more violence and prejudice against the LGBTI community.”

This bill is a sign that Haiti clearly has a long way when it comes to the government’s view of LGBT rights for its people. Hopefully, the pushback from the public will plant seeds in the right minds for a better future.

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