Ireland said YES to same-sex marriage one year ago today
LGBT people and allies in the Republic of Ireland are celebrating today as it is exactly one year since the country said yes to same-sex marriage in a groundbreaking referendum.
On 22 May 2015, the Irish public overwhelmingly voted to bring in equal marriage – with 62% of voters backing equality, and just 38% against despite strong lobbying from the Catholic Church in the country.
Weddings began in Ireland in November – and six months on, the country’s Department of Social Protection released figures for the first weddings, which showed that 412 couples had tied the knot so far.
Various events will take place on Sunday to mark the first anniversary of the referendum.
An event will be held at Dublin Castle by Yes Equality, a group which fought for equal marriage last year.
A wedding cake will be cut to celebrate all of the 412 marriages which have taken place since the referendum was signed into law.
Partaking in the celebrations will be Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Francis Fitzgerald.
New research has shown that the introduction in the Republic of Ireland last year has had an effect on those not yet old enough to marry, but that many feel that there is still much to be done to end bullying and discrimination.
Moninne Griffith, Executive Director of BeLonG To said young people were “broadly unaffected” by the referendum: “History was made when the Irish people said yes to marriage equality a year ago. But there is more work to do to achieve the Ireland we voted for last May.”
“We know from the young people we work with every day, that sadly their daily lives are broadly unaffected by the referendum. They are still experiencing bullying, isolation, mental health issues and are struggling without the right support,” she added.