Following Friday's ruling, the court's 10-0 decision in favour
of civil partnerships came at a "critical moment", Didi Cunha, a 38
year old lesbian from São Paolo told DIVA.
But it was not welcomed by all. The Catholic church in Brazil
argued against the decision, saying the only union the constitution
referred to was that between a man and a woman.
However, largely, the news was welcomed.
"The degree of civilisation of a country can be measured by the
way people in a nation treat their homosexual community," O Globo's
website cited Claudio Nascimento, head of Rio de Janeiro state's
Gay, Lesbian and Transsexuals Committee, as saying. "It's a
historic day for Brazil."
Those comments were echoed on the streets of Brazil. DIVA reader
Cunha, a graphic designer in Brazil, said: "The news today brought
me a lot of optimism.
"Although our country has many political and religious forces
against gay rights, the Supreme Court today gave us an example of
clarity and respect.
"The media coverage of recent attacks on homosexuals in São Paulo
highlighted a broad discussion about homophobia. Brazil is still
very conservative and intolerance is, unfortunately, still present
amongst our people.
"It is very positive for us have the support of the law but the
Brazilians still have a lot to conquer."
Brazil is the third South American country to allow same-sex
partnerships after Argentina and Uruguay.