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Content about Recognition of same-sex unions in Ireland

February 22, 2014

Recent poll shows 76% of Irish people said they would vote in favour of introducing same-sex marriage in the country, though nearly half would have ‘reservations’

More than three quarters (76%) of Irish people would welcome the introduction of same-sex marriage, according to a recent poll.

Additionally, 80% of those surveyed agreed that same-sex couples should have the same rights as traditional families.

However despite this, 49% of respondents said they had reservations about same-sex marriage - a higher percentage than when asked if they had reservations about gay couples adopting children (41%).

February 10, 2014

Pending a public vote in 2015 to allow same-sex marriages in Ireland, those who travel abroad to get married will have their status recognized in their home country

Same-sex couples who travel from Ireland to marry in the England, Wales and Scotland will have their status recognized pending a public vote next year.

A Department of Justice spokesman has confirmed that once a referendum allowing same-sex marriage in Ireland is passed, all foreign unions will be recognized.

January 10, 2014

Wedding bells could be ringing for gay couples by the end of 2014 as the European country with a gay Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister finally looks set to pass marriage equality

Luxembourg is set to pass gay marriage this summer.

If approved by parliament, gay couples could be finally walking down the aisle by the end of the year.

Justice Minister Félix Braz announced the news this week, saying he hoped it would be finally made law after years of delays.

Drawn up by the former government in 2010, the same-sex marriage draft law was due to be voted on late last year.
But following a change of government in October, the vote was postponed.

November 14, 2013

Insider claims government is hoping English, Welsh and Scottish gay couples will be able to be married at the same time in summer 2014

The UK Government is waiting for Scotland to pass same-sex marriage before gay couples can marry in England and Wales, an official has claimed.

In the four months since the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act was passed into law, no formal reports have been made on implementation.

But while the government remains silent, an anonymous source involved in the development of the law has got in touch with us.

They have claimed it is taking a year because this will be roughly the amount of time the devolved Scottish parliament needs to fast-track the bill.

November 6, 2013

Messages of support and scorn are flooding in as the Catholics, Church of Ireland and LGBTI campaigners have their say on a equal marriage referendum in 2015

In what could be one of the fiercest fights for gay marriage across the globe, Ireland’s Prime Minister has thrown down the gauntlet by revealing his ‘strong support’ for the issue.

The Taoiseach Enda Kenny promised to campaign for it in a referendum in front of reporters last night (5 November), ending a long silence over his views on equal marriage.

The Government has decided the Irish public will vote on same-sex marriage by mid-2015.

November 4, 2013

A referendum promised by Ireland's deputy PM Eamon Gilmore is likely to take place in autumn 2014 or spring 2015

Ireland’s Prime Minister Enda Kenny has said he will finally reveal his views on same-sex marriage.

The Taoiseach and his centre-right party Fine Gael has said they will make an announcement on whether they will be supporting or opposing marriage equality tomorrow (5 November).

Last week, the Deputy PM and head of Labour Eamon Gilmore promised there will be a public vote on same-sex marriage before spring 2015.

October 28, 2013

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore has promised Labour Youth members that he will push for a vote on marriage equality before 2015

Ireland’s Deputy Prime Minister has promised the country will vote on same-sex marriage.

Eamon Gimore, the Tánaiste, said there will likely be a referendum on the issue after an overwhelming majority of the Constitutional Convention think-tank voted to recommend it.

But a spokesman for the Labour party politician has said he wants to push for legislation to allow gay couples to adopt children before Ireland votes on marriage equality.

‘Any referendum that takes place will have to be about marriage equality and not about other issues,’ he said.

October 8, 2013

Civil partnerships are up in 2012, soaring far beyond original government expectations, but same-sex divorces also rise by 20%

The number of gay, lesbian and bisexual people in the UK forming civil partnerships is already more than the government expected by 2050 and is still increasing.

Meanwhile the divorce rate for civil partners has also shot up by 20% in the last year.

The British Government originally expected fewer than 90,000 people to be in the partnerships by 2050. But with 120,908 civil partners across the country by the end of 2012, that ‘high take-up estimation’ has been left far behind.

August 30, 2013

What exactly is happening in Thailand and Vietnam on law reform to recognize gay and lesbian relationships? Doug Sanders reports from Bangkok and Hanoi

While the focus has been on gay marriage in the West, same-sex partnership rights have also been on the move in South East Asia. We examine progress in Thailand and Vietnam, where the legislation could be debated this year.


In the fall of 2012, the issue of legal recognition for same-sex relationships was taken up by the Committee on Legal Affairs, Justice and Human Rights of the House of Representatives, the lower house in the Thai Parliament.

August 19, 2013

A member of a group of lawyers who has petitioned Chinese lawmakers to allow same-sex marriage has suggested that civil unions might be the first step towards that goal

One of ten lawyers who petitioned Chinese lawmakers to allow same-sex marriage in May said over the weekend that introducing civil partnerships might be the first step towards that goal.

Liu Wei, a lawyer with the Beijing-based Angelo Chen Law Office, made the comments at the United Nation Development Program (UNDP) sponsored 2013 China LGBT Community Consultation conference.

June 24, 2013

Gay marriage activists are concerned if same-sex marriage becomes legal in Republic of Ireland and not the north, then it would be a 'great embarrassment'

Ireland will be putting marriage equality to the public vote in 2014, according to Deputy Prime Minister Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore.

The Labor Party leader has confirmed the coalition government will put forward the gay rights legislation to the public in the form of a referendum next year.

The announcement follows after the Irish Constitutional Convention voted overwhelmingly in favor of same-sex marriage.

June 21, 2013

Alex Salmond's government will announce legislation for gay marriage and straight civil partnerships next week

Scotland is racing to catch up with England and Wales to give gay couples full equality under the law.

The devolved government are expected to finally outline their proposals to legalize same-sex marriage next week.

Going one step further than England and Wales, they are also expected to allow straight couples to enter civil partnerships.

Civil partnerships were first made legal in 2005, giving gay couples the ability to register their unions. They were given similar, but not all, the same legal recognition as married heterosexuals.

May 20, 2013

Veteran gay activist Peter Tatchell says UK government is ‘inconsistent, hypocritical and wrong’ by offering same-sex marriage but not straight civil partnerships

The current same-sex marriage bill going through the UK Parliament should be changed to allow for heterosexuals to have civil partnerships, veteran gay activist Peter Tatchell has said.

He is urging Members of Parliament (MPs) to vote for an amendment making the change to the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill for England and Wales which is coming before the House of Commons again today (20 May).

May 20, 2013

New YouGov poll shows majority of Britons support same-sex marriages and civil partnerships for straight couples

Most Britons back same-sex marriage legislation with only a third against.

That's the result of a new poll by YouGov.

It indicated ongoing support for the legislation going through the UK Parliament for the change in England and Wales. Separate legislation is being developed in Scotland.

The survey found 54% of Britons support same sex marriage legislation, with 36% opposed. Among Conservatives, more people oppose the measures than support them but the margin is narrow (48% to 45%).

May 17, 2013

UK Culture Secretary and Equalities Minister Maria Miller says there will be a review into whether straight people will want a civil partnership

UK civil partnerships could be granted to straight couples, after senior minister Maria Miller acknowledged there should be a ‘review’ into the future of the unions.

Last night (16 May), the culture secretary and equalities minister said after lobbying by members of parliament over the status of civil partnerships, the government will ‘formally review’ their future.

Miller is opposed to giving civil partnerships to straight couples, which she has called ‘not a requirement’.

May 16, 2013

Peter Tatchell criticizes UK Equalities Minister Maria Miller for opposing civil partnerships for straight couples, saying it amounts to discrimination

Veteran LGBT rights advocate, Peter Tatchell said that the UK Equalities Minister, Maria Miller, is wrong to reject heterosexual civil partnerships.

He stated that the ban on heterosexual couples amounts to discrimination and that the minister defies public consultation, which backed straight equality.

‘The government’s decision to oppose the legalization of civil partnerships for heterosexual couples is hugely disappointing.

April 29, 2013

Members of the legislative assembly have voted 53 against, 42 in favor of introducing same-sex marriage

Northern Ireland leaders in the Assembly have narrowly voted against same-sex marriage today (29 April).

Out of the 97 members of the legislative assembly, 42 voted in favor while 53 voted against.

An amendment adding language about protecting religious freedoms in the motion also failed, with 51 voting against and 46 in favor.

The vote followed the Irish Constitution Convention that voted for equal marriage with a 79% majority. 

April 17, 2013

Ireland’s Fine Gael party discussing with its Labor coalition partner to possibly postpone a referendum on gay marriage

Irish government coalition partners, Fine Gael and Labour Party, are in discussion on when to hold a referendum in the wake of a constitutional group backing marriage equality.

Despite the overwhelming support demonstrated at the Constitutional Convention, the government is not showing signs it will rush to a vote.

April 15, 2013

Rónán Mullen, an independent senator, said voters were made to feel bad if they did not take the 'politically correct' position

An anti-gay senator has said the Ireland constitutional convention voting in favor of marriage equality was ‘flawed’.

Rónán Mullen, an independent politician, has said senators were made to feel bad if they did not take the ‘politically correct’ position.

The 100 convention members casted their historic votes on 14 April in Dublin with 79 voting in favor of marriage equality.

April 14, 2013

Special convention overwhelmingly recommends to Ireland’s government to legalize marriage equality

Ireland’s constitutional convention has voted overwhelmingly in favor of amending the country’s constitution to legalize gay marriage.

The 100 convention members casted their historic votes earlier today (14 April) in Dublin with 79 voting in favor of marriage equality, reported the Irish Times.

April 8, 2013

Same-sex marriage has become more widely accepted across the US in the last year.

Support for marriage equality has grown across all 50 US states over the past eight years, a new report has found.

Published by the UCLA's Williams Institute, 'Public Support for Marriage for Same-Sex Couples by State', it found with an average increase of 13.6%. 

March 29, 2013

The Rainbow Project and Amnesty International warn Northern Ireland’s government that it will face court action if it continues to ban same-sex marriage

Amnesty International in partnership with a local LGBT group warned that Northern Ireland's power-sharing government will soon face a human rights legal case over its continual refusal to legalize marriage equality.

In October 2012 members of Northern Ireland's Stormont assembly rejected a motion by the Greens and Sinn Féin to legalize marriage equality.

February 4, 2013

Reverend Sharon Ferguson comments as church document claims letting gay wed would destroy ‘traditional institution of marriage’

The head of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement (LGCM) has said new Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby’s plan to attack same-sex marriage as ‘absolutely horrific’.

Reverend Sharon Ferguson of the LGCM told Gay Star News that Welby shouldn’t use his first day in the job to attack gay and lesbian couples but should be trying to welcome them back into the Church of England he now heads.

Welby is being formally confirmed in his new job today (4 February) at a service in St Paul’s Cathedral in London.

January 30, 2013

Bishops from the Roman Catholic Church of England and Wales have outlined their reasons why gay couples should not get married

The Catholic Church in England and Wales has said gay people may make good parents but must still be banned from marriage.

Bishops have outlined their reasons why they believe same-sex couples should not be allowed to get married.

In the document published in the Catholic Herald, it states: ‘We recognize that many same-sex couples raise children in loving and caring homes.