LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

The wait for marriage equality continues in Northern Ireland

ILGA-Europe was disappointed to learn of this evening’s (Monday, 27 April 2015) vote by the Northern Ireland Assembly to reject marriage equality for the fourth time in recent years.

Parliamentarians at Stormont voted against a call to extend the rights and obligations associated with civil marriage to gay and lesbian couples in Northern Ireland by 49 votes to 47.

News of the final result from Belfast is obviously not encouraging. Tonight, Northern Ireland continues to stand alone as the only part of the United Kingdom yet to legislate for marriage equality. Efforts by political parties in favour of equal marriage rights were previously voted down in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Now 2015 has been added to that disappointing roll call.

“Equal marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples are being recognised across Europe with inspiring and refreshing frequency.” commented ILGA-Europe Executive Director Evelyne Paradis.

“Scotland celebrated at the close of 2014, Luxembourg’s law came into effect at the start of 2015 and our friends in Ireland are now counting the days until their own marriage equality referendum. ILGA-Europe remain hopeful that the tireless advocacy work being carried out by LGBTI activists and NGOs, across Northern Ireland, will also bear fruit in the near future.”