Local Election Candidates views on marriage equality

Carlow County Council - Borris

“I have no problem with same-sex couples having the same legal rights as married couples in the context of a civil union. From the religious perspective I think that this is a personal matter as to what blessing a God would give to such a union. There may be some adoption issues that I have not fully thought through myself.”
Councillor Alan Price, Green Party Candidate

Cork County Council – Macroom Town Council

“I fully support same sex marriage. It is shameful that our country has not brought our laws up to date to match our society and the will of the majority of Irish people. In my view there is no division between rights for LBGT people, father's rights, traveller's rights etc. there are only human rights and these are universal. Best of luck with your campaign and if I can support in any way just let me know.”
Mark Collins, Green Party Representative

Cork County Council – Mallow

“Just a quick line to say that I fully support the introduction of any measures that would ease medical and legal concerns for people - whatever their sexual orientation, and abhor discrimination of all sorts. I feel very strongly that there is no legitimate reason to oppose something that can only make other peoples' lives better and won't interfere at all with your own life. It baffles me, frankly”.
Trish O'Dea, Fianna Fail Candidate

Cork City – North Central

“I am opposed to all discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and would see the state's current ban on marriage for same sex couples in that context. The right to marry is a civil right that should be enjoyed by all consenting couples above the legal age limit.”
Councillor Mick Barry, Socialist Party Candidate

Cork City – Cork North East

“I believe in equal rights regardless of sexuality everyone in Ireland should receive equal treatment from the state regardless of whether they are gay, lesbian or straight.”
Councillor Kenneth O Flynn, Fianna Fail

Cork City – Cork North East

“Just to let you know that i'm in favour of equal marriage rights for same sex couples.”
Ken Walsh, Green Party Candidate

Cork City – Cork North West

“would be supportive of civil partnerships and the rights of same-sex couples to adopt.
Dr. John Sheehan, Fianna Fail Candidate

Cork City - Cork South East

“I am in full support of gay marriage.”
Stephen Crowley green party candidate

Cork City - Cork South West

“I support marriage equality for all couples in a relationship who want to get married in the eyes of the state. I support your campaign. However, I am realistic enough to know that any such legislation would be difficult to get on the statute books. There are specific constitutional problems in Ireland, which sadly have to be worked through before legislation could be passed. It was the same with divorce, and it took two bitter referenda and thirty years before we resolved the issue.”
Barry Keane, Fine Gael Candidate

Donegal County Council - Inishowen

"I absolutely support equal marriage rights for same sex couples, the fact that their equality is even in question is ridiculous."
Bartholomew Connell, Independent

Dublin City – Artane-Whitehall

“I would whole heartedly support the right of same-sex couples to have the same legal rights when it comes to marriage as couples who are not the same sex. Not to do so would be to support the current system of sexual apartheid which exists.”
Martin O’Sullivan, People Before Profit Alliance Candidate

Dublin City – Ballyfermot-Drimnagh

“I fully support equal marriage rights for same-sex couples. As a gay man myself, I am acutely aware of the necessity of this measure and of the benefits to society that would come with this advance in human rights. I am encouraged by MarriagEquality's 2009 Report "It's No Joke" - which found that a majority of Irish people would vote in favour of same-sex marriage, should the courts deem a referendum necessary. I feel the institution of marriage would be strengthened rather than weakened by enlarging its availability to gay and lesbian people. I feel the stigma surrounding homosexuality that leads to bullying of young people and homophobic violence would be greatly undermined with this ultimate societal acceptance of gay and lesbian relationships. I feel that everybody should be able to look forward to one day marrying the person they love. Please feel free to contact me should you have any more questions or queries in relation to this or any other issues.”
Stephen Wall, Green Party Candidate.

Dublin City – North Inner City

“I fully support the campaign for the extension of marriage rights to same sex couples. I wish you the very best with the MarriagEquality campaign.”
Colm Stephens, People Before Profit Alliance Candidate

Dublin City – Pembroke-Rathmines

“I support and always have supported equality for gay couples in Ireland. My record on a range of “social” and Civil Liberties during my sixteen years as an elected Public Representative and for many years before that will show that. On what is sometimes seen as a contentious area the adoption of children is my view is that the rights of the child must be the predominant point on which a decision is made. I believe that in a gay and non gay situation.”
Dermot Lacey, Labour Party Candidate

“I am fully supportive of equal rights for same sex couples - ..You can check out my remarks on the subject on my blog - which is accessible through my website, www.bryceevans.org.”
Bryce Evans, People Before Profit Alliance Candidate

“Any service, entitlement or benefit conferred by the State on its citizens should be conferred without reference to the sex, race and/or sexual orientation of a citizen. Consequently, since the State does register marriages one must start with the presumption that State involvement in this area should be non-discriminatory.”
Jim O’Callaghan, Fianna Fail Candidate

Dublin City – South West Inner City

“All people in Ireland should be equal in terms of their treatment under our legislation and social policy. Although rights for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people have improved in recent years, this group still suffers legal discrimination. The notion of mutual respect is key to all Irish citizens being able to live full and rewarding lives and contribute to society. In practical terms, lesbian and gay people should be entitled to marry in Ireland and should benefit from the same legal recognition as the straight community for de facto relationships such as civil partnership (as recommended by Ireland's Law Reform Commission). I do not believe that a referendum is necessary in order to introduce same-sex marriages. The concept of family has moved forward here as it has elsewhere and today Irish families exist in many forms. Government needs to act to put appropriate counseling and support structures in place on a national level. This will help combat issues such as the disturbingly high rates of suicide, self-harm, depression and eating disorders among young gay people.”
Martin Hogan, Green Party Candidate

“I fully support the campaign for the extension of marriage rights to same-sex couples. I also call for the recognition of the rights of all couples (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered and Straight) who do not want to get married. All couples should be able to choose to cohabit without registration, avail of registered partnership or marry as they see fit.”
Tina MacVeigh, People Before Profit Alliance Candidate

"I fully support equal marriage for same sex couples and i believe that anything short of this would be inadequate and unfair."
Lisa Connell, Independent

"Equality is about equal treatment and equal rights. Therefore, I would wholeheartedly support the introduction of gay marriage. I believe however that this will require a constitutional referendum, because of the definition of marriage and the family in the constitution. I am aware that there is disagreement between the different LGBT community groups and other stakeholders, as to whether a referendum is an absolute necessity, but I think, we only need look at the current composition of the Supreme Court to realise that it is more conservative than it has been in years, and therefore more unlikely to give a progressive interpretation. This would mean going to the people on the question of marriage which I support. In the meantime, we need to protect and support the gay and lesbian couples, who are now in need of rights. We can pass legislation, such as legislating for civil unions (which Labour has twice proposed - with all rights on a par with marriage) and protect those families now. I am particularly concerned, as I have met people who are worrying constantly, if their death would bankrupt their partner or if their children would legally be strangers to their partner, were they to die."
Rebecca Moynihan, Labour Party Candidate

South Dublin County Council – Lucan

“I fully support equal marriage rights for Gay and Lesbian Couples. A right is something we either have or have not. I do not believe it's possible to have a "bit of a right". It is for this reason that I am concerned at the concept of Civil Partnerships. Whilst some may argue that it is a step in the direction of attaining equal marriage rights, personally, I believe there is a real danger that accepting Civil Partnerships poses a risk to the chances of obtaining equal rights. Because, by accepting the very concept of Civil Partnerships, implies an acceptance that same sex couples are somehow "less equal" then heterosexual couples, and that to grant full and equal marriage rights is bestowing a privilege, rather than a right, on same sex couples. I would be interested on your views on this. If I can help your campaign in anyway, please feel free to contact me.”
Kevin Farrell, Green Party Local Area Representative.

South Dublin County Council – Tallaght Central

“As a socialist and a Labour Party candidate, I am proud to be an advocate for equal marriage rights for same sex couples. Equality is the fundamental mission of the Labour Party, and the right of two people to marry regardless of gender is one which we have been to the fore on. I sincerely hope that those involved in this campaign for equality will support Labour this June.”
Dermot Looney, Labour Party Candidate

“I have no moral or legal objections to the concept of same sex unions but I would make the observation as a County Councillor that this is a legislative issue and outside the remit of County Councils.”
Councillor Joe Neville, Fianna Fail

Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council – Ballybrack

“As you know the Government has committed to introducing a Civil Partnership Bill, this needs to happen as soon as possible. To be honest in my own view I feel this is a little slow in coming and it needs to be hurried up, several deadlines for its introduction have passed now. I would ideally like to see it being passed before the Summer recess. I support full marriage equality for LGBT people. I see no reason for discrimination on the grounds of somebody’s sexual orientation. However, with that said, I do not feel sure that a referendum on the issue of LGBT marriage would pass. I would be interested if you had any facts/figures to prove me wrong? I think we need to press ahead with the Civil Partnership Bill, I think its passing into law and the subsequent registration of same-sex relationships will go a long way to opening a lot of people’s eyes to the need for full equality.

If there are any other questions that you have please don't hesitate to contact me. I note from your website that you are encouraging people to visit clinics of TDs etc. I work for Barry Andrews TD and hold a weekly clinic myself. So far we have had only one couple visit us and that was before last Christmas.”
Councillor Gareth Crowe, Fianna Fail

Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council – Blackrock

“I fully support the introduction of equal marriage rights for same-sex couples as the only way of granting equality to gay and lesbian people in Ireland. If elected, I will work with organisations such as MarriagEquality in whatever way I can to advance their goals and pursue their aims.”
Ronan Farren, Labour Party Candidate

Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council – Dundrum

Not a local election issue but without hesitation is fully supportive of marriage equality–
Terence Corish, Green Party Candidate

Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council – Glencullen/Sandyford

“I am fully supportive of gay marriage.”
Adrianne Wyse, Green Party Candidate

“It seems a no-brainer to me. Fully supportive. I include some text from the Labour Party Manifesto. “Labour’s Civil Union Bill was defeated by the present government parties. In government, Labour will reintroduce and enact this legislation. The Bill will create a status relationship equivalent to marriage for the benefit of people who are of the same sex and who, under the current constitutional understanding of marriage, cannot marry each other. In most respects, the same rules that apply to marriage will apply to civil unions. Partners in a civil union will have the same rights, privileges and benefits and be subject to the same obligations, penalties and other sanctions as those that apply to spouses in a marriage. They will also be responsible for the support of one another and for any dependent child to the same degree and in the same manner as married persons. The Bill provides that parties to a civil union who are living together may apply to adopt a child. The Bill also states that all adoption decisions must be made in the best long-term interests of the child. Our objective, in due course, is to bring about constitutional change to provide for full equality between heterosexual and homosexual couples. In addition, Labour will take a number of measures to improve the position and well-being of lesbian, gay and transgendered citizens in our society.”
Aidan O’Sullivan, www.aidanosullivan.ie, Labour Party

Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council - Ballybrack

“ I support equal marriage rights for same sex couples.”
Councillor Carrie Smyth, Labour Party

Fingal – Howth/Malahide

“So far as I am aware, a constitutional change would be required to allow equal rights for same sex couples. While I have no personal difficulty with such a referendum this is clearly not a local election matter.”
Cllr. Alan Farrell, Fine Gael

“100% support! I’ve been to civil union registrations up north & cannot accept the republic won’t legalise.”
Brian Greene, Socialist Party Candidate

"As someone who has campaigned for full lgbt equality since my student days and who has been active in the campaign for civil marriage, and as an openly gay candidate, I support 100% civil marriage and full equality now."
Cian O'Callaghan, Labour Party Candidate

Fingal – Mulhuddart

“The Socialist Party candidates and I fully support the right of same-sex couples to have equal marriage rights and full equality regarding all legal rights. I am happy to support the campaign.”
Councillor Ruth Coppinger, Socialist Party Candidate

Fingal – Swords

“I have always been of the opinion that same-sex marriages should be enshrined in our constitution. If two people love each other and wish to celebrate that love through marriage I for one see no logical reasons for that union not to take place.”
Ken Duffy Green Party Candidate

“I would support civil unions for same sex couples who should be able to legally make the same commitments to each other as married couples and have the same legal benefits at rights offered under law with regard to survivorship, property, pensions, etc.”
Councillor Darragh Butler, Fianna Fáil

Fingal - Castleknock

“I fully support the right of same-sex couples to enter into civil marriage on the same basis as heterosexual couples. I believe this is the only option that guarantees full equality for same-sex couples as citizens of the Irish state. I also support the current proposal for civil partnerships. I am fully aware that as an institution civil partnership does not create full equality and has major defects, particularly in the area of protection for children. However, I do believe that the institution of civil partnership will give genuine protection to couples in long term relationships and will also give real recognition to these relationships. I believe the experience from Vermont shows that it is feasible to achieve civil partnership and successfully continue to press for full civil marriage. I acknowledge that others in the LGBT community take a different view on the usefulness of civil partnership, but I believe it is a significant step forward towards full equality.”
Roderic O’Gorman, Green Party Candidate

Galway City - Central

“I would be very supportive of equality for same-sex couples and I'm proud that the Green Party in government have taken the significant steps towards making it a reality in Ireland.”
Máiréad Ni Chróinín, Green Party Candidate

Galway City - Central

“Labour in government will bring about constitutional change to provide for full equality between heterosexual and homosexual couples. I am totally supportive of our party’s national policy to improve the position and well-being of the LGBT community.”
Councillor Billy Cameron, Labour Party

Galway City Council - Connemara

“It's difficult enough to find love in this world and where two same sex individuals find love and wish to have this recognised and acknowledged by the Irish State then this should be made possible via civil marriage. This will provide equality and protection to these couples".
Councillor Sean Kyne, Fine Gael

Galway City Council – Loughrea

“In my opinion, same-sex couples should have same equality and entitlements as married couples or co-habiting people once they can prove that are supporting each other financially, joint bank accounts etc.”
Gerry Finnerty, Fianna Fail Candidate

Galway City – East

“I want the same rights for same-sex couples as different sex couples. But I don’t think it should be referred to as marriage or even marriage rights for either.”
James Hope, Green Party Candidate

Galway City – West

“Yes I am supportive”
Niall O’ Brolchain, Green Party Candidate

Kerry County Council, Tralee Town Council

“ I have a very simplistic view to same sex marriage, I believe in equality! The Greens have probably the most progressive views in this area; the Kerry Greens have also been very active in bringing motions to National Council and speaking in convention supporting same sex marriage. Equality in all its forms have to be at the forefront of social justice, for too long many people have been marginalised in Irish society, sometimes out of fear by their oppressors. I believe in equal rights and social justice, whether based on sex, colour, disability, social standing, ethnicity or sexual orientation, we all deserve the chance to be all we can in life, equal rights to education are also very important to me. I wish you all the best and can reassure support from both myself and the North Kerry Green Party Constituency group.”
David Grey, Green Party Candidate

Kildare County Council – Athy

“ I am supportive of equal marriage rights for same sex couples.”
Adrian Kane, Labour Party

Kildare County Council – Kildare

“I used to do a lot of work with the LGBT community back in my SU days. I was the Dep Pres in TCD back in 2001/2002 where I worked closely with LGBSOC (as it was) and our own LGB officer on lots of issues, including a high profile campaign around blood donations. As it happens, I wrote a piece for my blog nearly 2 years ago on the issue of same-sex marriage (and more general civil unions) and adoption rights -http://blog.tonyodonnell.ie/?p=30.

I personally believe that if the State confers rights around inheritance, taxation, property, etc. to stable couples, then they do not have the right to discriminate based on the orientation or circumstances of that couple. However, I am yet to be convinced on the issue of adoption. I believe that adoption is not an automatic right of any potential parent, and the system should only focus on the best interests of the child. I would be against a blanket ban on same-sex adoption, as I think there are circumstances where an existing connection is more important to the child irrespective of orientation (see the blog piece). However, I am yet to be convinced that there should be adoption equality between heterosexual and same-sex couples. As I said in the article, this may be due to social conditioning rather than any sophisticated philosophical viewpoint. I am prepared to be open-minded on this, but I have yet to be persuaded.”
Tony O’Donnell, Fine Gael Candidate

Kildare County Council – Leixlip Town Council

“I wish to register my total support for marriage equality. I feel very strongly that gay and lesbian couples should be afforded the same rights as same sex couples. My own son is a gay man and lives in London. He is in a long term relationship and someday the two of them will be able to put that union on a legal footing.”
Pat Burke Walsh, Fine Gael Candidate

Kildare County Council – Naas Town Council

“ I do not have any issue with same sex couples getting married.”
Councillor Darren Scully, Fine Gael

Kildare County Council – Newbridge Town Council

“Michael Nolan Kildare – Believes Churches should look after their own business but in terms of civil marriage, he believes in equality for all people, irrespective of race, gender, sexuality. If 2 people are committed to each other, then he believes that they should have the right to marry.”
Michael Nolan, Fine Gael Candidate

“I have fully read up on and understand the difference between Civil Partnerships and Civil Marriage.  
I support same sex couples and feel that equal rights in terms of tax relief and inheritance rights should be granted equally to same-sex couples and opposite sex couples. The issue of same-sex couples can be both emotive and complicated but ultimately the rights of everyone to be treated equally, regardless of sexual orientation, is paramount in a liberal democratic society.”

Emma Kiernan, Fine Gael

Kilkenny County Council – Pilltown

"It is my view that all citizens are entitled to equality before the law and in society. Fine Gael have a policy document in regard to civil partnerships which can be accessed via their website at www.finegael.ie."
Fintan Byrne, Fine Gael Candidate

Kilkenny County Council – Kilkenny Borough Council

“I believe that all citizens should be treated equally no matter what. As someone who is happily married with two lovely girls, I cannot see how allowing same-sex couples get married would in any way affect the status of my marriage. If two people love each other and want to display this through marriage, then the state has no place excluding anyone because of their gender.”
Sean Butler, Labour Party Candidate

Leitrim County Council – Ballinamore

“I wish to confirm I am in support of your cause. .”
Gordon Hughes, Fine Gael Candidate

Leitrim County Council – Carrick-on-Shannon

“ I am fully supportive of equal marriage rights for same sex couples. Nobody should be denied rights on the basis of their gender or sexual orientation.”
Garreth McDaid, Green Party Candidate

Leitrim County Council - Dromahair

“Civil marriage is a contract between two people who wish to be united in body and spirit and to enjoy the status that flows from this. I don't see why this option should not be available to same-sex couples under the auspices of our state and constitution, with all the taxation and inheritance rights due from this contract. I would be delighted for you to notify your members in County Leitrim of my position. Good luck with your ongoing campaign.”
Johnny Gogan, Fianna Fail Candidate

Limerick County Council - Castleconnell

“ I am 100% supportive of marriage rights for same-sex couples in Ireland, and I feel very strongly that gay couples should have the same chance to adopt as any heterosexual couple. I'm proud of the commitment shown by the Greens to this issue since entering government, and look forward to the publication of the civil partnership bill shortly. I fully expect that the Greens have put in place the first step to complete and inevitable marriage equality in Ireland.”
Trish Forde Brennan, Green Party Candidate

Mayo County Council – Castlebar Town Council

“As a Labour Candidate in the Castlebar electoral area of Co. Mayo, who is running for Mayo County Council and Castlebar Town Council, I am fully in support of the Labour Party Policy in relation to equal marriage rights for same sex couples. I would please ask you to make a special effort to communicate my support to your members in the Castlebar area of Co. Mayo, as we are on the verge of making serious inroads against those Party's that have set their faces against your plight over the years. My mobile number is 087 9713268, if any of your members want to ask me any specific questions on this issue..”
Cllr. Harry Barrett, Labour Party

Mayo County Council – Castlebar Town Council

“No issue at all. "Live and let live" is very much my mantra so everyone can live happily in the privacy of their own homes”
Peter Flynn, Fine Gael Candidate

Meath County Council – Dunshaughlin

“For me personally, all couples, irrespective of their complexion, whether heterosexual, gay or lesbian, are entitled to, and should have equal rights to civil marriage. Church marriages are an issue for the relevant religions. Civil marriages carry extensive rights for the parties involved, and their families such as inheritance rights, taxation treatment etc. These rights should and must be available to all citizens of Ireland. Our constitution protects the family. It does not state that the family must be constituted as male, female heterosexual. It just protects the family. End of. Any deviation from a full right to civil marriage, in my opinion will create a two tier system which will be a step backwards.”
Gerry O’Connor, Fine Gael Candidate

Meath County Council – Navan Town Council

“I was just discussing your campaign and website last week with a constituent. You have my full support.”
David Browne, Fine Gael Candidate

Monaghan County Council – Monaghan Town Council

“It's not something that I have any particularly strong view on but I tend to be pretty "live and let live".
Patrick Gilsenan, Fine Gael Candidate

Tipperary South – Cahir

“To be quite honest with you I hadn't ever given the whole concept of Gay/Lesbian marriages much thought as I had never had the need to be involved with anyone who needed my assistance or advise in that particular area. I am an Open Minded individual and would need to weigh up the pros and cons of such a situation before I would commit to an answer. If a gay or Lesbian couple came to me for assistance in anything that was within my remit I would not deal with it any differently form a straight couple. I will give my personal opinion some thought but for the moment I will remain committed to working as a local councillor to represent both Gay and Straight sexes.”
Councillor Andy Moloney, Fianna Fail

Waterford City – East

“ I don't see any problem with same-sex couples having equal marriage rights.”
Jacqueline Kelly, Fine Gael Candidate

“I believe that all people have the right to choose who they decide to have a relationship with, whether that is of opposite or same sex should not be an issue. I also believe that the state should support this; I would be very much in favour of equal marriage rights for all”
Gary Wyse, Fianna Fail Candidate

Waterford City – North

“I as in all walks of life am a supporter of equal status rights for everyone regardless. It is our fundamental and basic right to express who we are. I have a number of friends who happen to be gay and hope that one day they can enjoy equal marriage status the same as I will do. This is something that I will support eagerly.”
Liam Dunne, Fianna Fail Candidate

Waterford City – South

“I support the right of gay people and all people to marry or cohabit as they see fit, good luck to them.”
Donie Fell, People before Profit Alliance Candidate

Westmeath County Council – Athlone

“I have no problem with same-sex marriages, in fact I think that they need a legal basis in order to fulfil normal everyday things like joint ownership of property etc.”
Councillor John Dolan, Fine Gael

Wexford County Council – Gorey Town Council

"I fully support equal marriage rights for same sex couples and have raised the issue with successive Justice Ministers. I am particularly concerned at the delays in bringing forward even the basic Civil Partnership legislation. Local authorities must allow ensure that they do not in any way discriminate against any person or persons on the basis of their sexual orientation."
Malcolm Byrne, Fianna Fail Candidate

Wexford – Wexford Borough Council

“At the outset I wish to say that I am fully supportive of Labour Party policy on this issue. As you know the Labour Party has proposed on more than one occasion a Civil Partnership Act and each time the government responded that they were going to propose their own legislation n the matter. I welcome the Labour Party's proposed bill. You will be aware recently the government missed another deadline on this issue. Fundamentally I am opposed to discrimination on any grounds. I believe that all citizens are entitled to equal treatment before the law and that couples are entitled to have a relationship both recognised and protected in law. I would be happy to meet with any members in Wexford in the next few weeks to set out my views on the issue.”
Councillor Joe Ryan, Labour Party

Wicklow – Bray Town Council

“As someone who has been involved in LGBT rights for 7 years I am supportive of equal marriage rights for same sex couples. I do however recognise that there are obstacles to achieving this and if those obstacles prove insurmountable then I would support Full Civil Partnership as a stepping stone towards full equality.”
Ian McGahon, The Labour Party

“I will set out below what I stand for as well as some info regarding your query in relation to equality. I am a Councillor in Bray for the Green Party. The Green Party policy is for equality and civil partnership rights, check out our website at http://www.greenparty.ie/en/policies/marriage_and_partnership_rights. Last year we invited Catherine Zappone and her partner to speak at our annual Convention. I am supportive of equality and equal rights, and I would support Civil Partnership, for same sex couples. Info about me is available on my website www.carolineburrell.com and I am also on Facebook and twitter as well. I hope this answers your query and if you have any others, please do not hesitate to contact me.”
Councillor. Caroline Burrell, The Green Party