(BlogMensGo 23 February 2012) In 2008 a poll was cast whereby 56% of the population were in favor of gay marriage in Ireland. Now in 2011, this poll has been cast again by Red C and has come out at 73%. These results were presented yesterday to Ireland’s Oireachtas in a report prepared for the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on the last constitutional referendum.
‘The poll confirms the openness of Irish people and their support for further critically important progress to achieving equality for lesbian and gay people’ said Kieran Rose the chair of Ireland’s Gay and Lesbian Equality Network.
The current Civil Partnership Act came into effect on January 1st 2011 with a 3 month waiting period required by law for all civil ceremonies, the first publicly celebrated Irish civil partnership was celebrated by Hugh Walsh and Barry Dignam in Dublin, although this was not the first, which was celebrated by a couple in February but they have not been named.
The issue arises now from the fact that Civil Partnership is not the same as Marriage. Couples in Civil Partnerships (much like here in Switzerland) are not afforded the same rights as a Heterosexual married couple. For example there is no rights to guardianship of children and property inheritance. This is something that the ‘Marriage Equality‘ and Gay and Lesbian Equality are trying to change.
“GLEN’s goal, and that of lesbian and gay people, is access to civil marriage which is the only option that will achieve equality of status with opposite-sex couples and which would underpin a wider equality for lesbian and gay people.” said Kieran Rose of GLEN.
He went on to say “The proposed Constitutional Convention provides the opportunity to build on the progress of Civil Partnership and provide constitutional protection for our relationships. It also offers a very important opportunity to protect all families equally, including lesbian and gay headed families.
Comment: We are making progress, albeit slow, if I think back to when I came out in 2002, gay marriage was pretty much unheard of for me. We need these people to fight for us and we also need to fight ourselves for our rights. It is a shame that Ireland did not see it fit when the law was initially passed to afford the gays the same rights as the heterosexuals. After all, adopting a child is difficult enough as it is with the stringent checks etc, so why should it be any different for a gay couple to adopt a child? Personally I do not know many gay parents, apart from a lesbian couple who I was lucky enough to stay with whilst working near London. The children had not been adopted but were that of one of the couple. The way the children had been raised was far surpassing to some children I had seen about raised by straight families. If there is a concern as to what damage having two Mums or two Dads could do to the children, I think this couple could be used as an example of how a child can turn out with the right care. The bottom line is, it should not even come into consideration wether the parents may be of the same sex its how those parents raise the children…..maybe more consideration should be given to aiding the parents in dealing with persecutions of being a minority.
Via Pink News 23 February 2012
Matt / Mensgo