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Croatia Bedtime Stories Feature Same-Sex Families for First Time



Zrinka Znidarcic has a new picture-book for her two-year-old son, called My Rainbow Family. At first glance, it looks like many other publications aimed at pre-school children - heavy on full-page, colourful illustrations and light on text. But, for starters, it can be read from the back or the front - as there are two different stories which meet in the middle.

And then there are the characters. A little girl with two fathers. And a young boy with two mothers. It is the first time that a children's book in Croatia has depicted families with same-sex parents. But it is a direct challenge to conservative organisations backed by the Catholic Church. Five years ago, they forced a referendum which blocked the then government's plans to legalise same-sex marriage. Now they are taking aim at a children's picture-book.

One organisation, Vigilare, says its mission is to "promote the original (natural) identity of marriage… between a man and a wife in which children are raised". It called My Rainbow Family "homosexual propaganda" and urged the education minister to ban it from schools. Vigilare did not respond to repeated requests for an interview.


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