Same-sex marriage and adoption could be on the brink of being legalised in Cuba thanks to a draft of a new family code.

The preliminary draft suggests letting gay couples marry and adopt children, with the latter getting more of a say in the decisions that will impact them.

It must be approved by Cuba’s parliament before being sent to a grassroots plebiscite, though Evangelical groups are objecting to the proposed removal of describing marriage as only being between a man and a woman.

In the draft, marriage is described as being between “two people … with absolutely equal rights and obligations.”

During the announcement of the family code’s new draft, Justice Minister Óscar Silveira Martínez said: “We consider this version to be consistent with the constitutional text, and develop and update the various legal-family institutions in correspondence with the humanistic nature of our social process.”

Cuban officials emphasised that the updated code is not just about same-sex marriage and that it covers a much broader range of issues.

“It protects all expressions of family diversity and the right of each person to establish a family in coherence with the constitutional principles of plurality, inclusion, and human dignity,” Yamila González Ferrer, vice president of the National Union of Jurists of Cuba, said.

The country’s current family code dates back to 1975, with the new one being drawn up by a team of 30 experts.

It has over 480 articles and is expected to be posted to the Justice Ministry’s website to gauge public opinion.

Lawmakers will review it in December before heading to a popular referendum in 2022.