Ireland Congratulates France on becoming the 14th Country to Legislate for Same Sex Couples

23 Apr 2013

Advocacy group Marriage Equality has said huge congratulations are the order of the day as France becomes the latest nation to legalise marriage for same-sex couples with a final vote on legislation before lawmakers in their lower house.”

Moninne Griffith, Director of Marriage Equality in Ireland said that this vote is a significance vote of confidence following on from the 79% Yes vote at the recent Constitutional Convention in Ireland and shows Europeans are in the majority in favour of equal rights for all people irrespective of sexuality.”

The bill, which also gives same-sex couples the right to adopt, was approved in the Senate earlier this month. The left, which includes President Francois Hollande’s governing Socialist Party, dominates the National Assembly, where the bill was approved by a large majority in February on its first reading. Hollande, who promised to introduce marriage equality during his election campaign, will now sign the bill to become law.

Last week New Zealand became the 13th country to achieve marriage equality and the first country in the Asia Pacific region. The law is set to be enacted later this year. “Now really is the time for marriage equality in Ireland," according to Ms Griffith "we want Ireland to lead this movement for equality and not fall behind. As the push for equality for same sex couples and families gains momentum in countries like France, New Zealand, Uruguay and the UK, we call on our own political leaders to make it a reality here too. Irish people want this as was shown by the overwhelming vote at the recent constitutional convention. Ireland is ready, with a strong majority of Irish people who think same sex couples should have the right to marry the person they love."

 “We call on the Government to implement this positive recommendation as soon as possible to provide for 'same-sex marriage' in the constitution by putting this issue to the people of Ireland in a referendum. A referendum on the issue here in Ireland is our opportunity for us as a citizens of this country to take the next step as a modern  democracy that has respect for diversity and that believes in equality,” added Ms Griffith.  “This is our chance to be leaders when it comes to equality for all, and to enshrine essential Irish values of justice, equality, fairness, and respect for all citizens in the Constitution."