Love Equality NI: “We did it”
BY DANIELLE MUSTARDE
After years of campaigning by LGBTQI equality groups, organisations and allies, same-sex marriage is now legal in Northern Ireland with couples able to register their intention to marry from today, Monday 13 January 2020.
Couples who are already married will also be legally recognised by the Northern Irish government. However, those in civil partnerships will not be able to convert theirs to a marriage at present, though a consultation has been planned for later this year to discuss this and the role of “churches in same-sex marriage,” as the BBC reported.
Additionally, “heterosexual couples will also be able to enter into civil partnerships from today.”
When will the first marriages take place?
Though any marriages are yet to take place as couples are required to “indicate their intention to marry 28 days before doing so”, the first will happen around Valentines Day, in February.
“A remarkable acheivement”
Speaking to the BBC, John O’Doherty from the Love Equality campaign said today was the, “culmination of five years of campaigning for marriage equality and marks an enormous step forward for LGBT+ people.
“There remain a number of issues to be addressed before couples in Northern Ireland have the same rights as those in other jurisdictions.
“However, we celebrate this remarkable achievement with the thousands of people who made their voices heard and demanded change in spite of the many barriers placed in their way.”
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