Facebook has added two new relationship status options, to describe the relationship status on a user’s profile page, in the usual roster of relationship options which include Single, In a relationship, Engaged, Married, It’s complicated, In an open relationship, Widowed, Separated and Divorced.
The two newly added options are; “In a civil union” and “In a domestic partnership”.
The introduction of these two new features has allowed users, living in states where same-sex marriages are not allowed (but “Domestic relationships” and “Civil Unions” exist), to openly express their relationship statuses on Facebook.
The additions have been made after consultation with national LGBT and human rights organizations. The changes are reflected in the profiles of users in North America, France, the U.K., and Australia will be rolled out to other countries soon. However, both the new relationship status options will not appear in regions where same-sex marriages are already legal.
GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) President Jarrett Barrios said in an email to Mashable:
“Being able to see same-sex couples in civil unions and domestic partnerships who celebrate their relationships no differently than married couples will serve as another reminder that these couples still lack the same legal recognition and protections associated with marriage. Facebook’s noteworthy move also highlights the vast majority of same-sex couples living in states where there are no legal protections whatsoever.”
Nothing has been mentioned in Facebook’s official blog regarding the new addition, though the company’s manager of public policy communications, Andrew Noyes, told a popular news site:
“It has been a ‘highly requested feature’. ‘We want to provide options for people to genuinely and authentically reflect their relationships on Facebook.”
It has been quite a time since the social website started supporting the LGBT community. Facebook has also collaborated with GLAAD to stop the bullying of the LGBT community in the past.