Rights Watchdog to Make the Case for Equal Marriage to Constitutional Convention

Press release, for immediate release

Dublin, 10 April 2013

Ireland's independent human rights watchdog, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL), has been invited to make a presentation to the Convention on the Constitution during the constitutional reform body’s deliberations this Saturday (13 April 2013) on opening marriage up to same-sex couples.

Saturday’s session is the third in the Convention’s series of plenary sessions on a range of proposals for constitutional reform. The topic of marriage for same-sex couples has attracted by far the most public interest, and has seen the Convention receive over 1000 submissions during its recent consultation process. The ICCL is one of a small number of submitting organisations to be invited to address the Convention.

Speaking today (Wednesday 10 April 2013), the ICCL’s Equality Officer Stephen O’Hare said:

“The ICCL is greatly honoured to be invited to share our knowledge and expertise with the members of the Convention on the Constitution.”

“The ICCL strongly believes that only marriage equality will achieve full equality of status with opposite-sex couples, and that this is necessary to underpin wider respect and equality for LGBT people and their families in modern Ireland.”

ENDS.

For further information, please contact:

Walter Jayawardene
Communications Manager
Irish Council for Civil Liberties
9-13 Blackhall Place
Dublin 7
Ireland

Tel. + 353 1 799 4503
Mob: +353 87 9981574   
Fax. + 353 1 799 4512
 
E-mail  walter.jayawardene@iccl.ie

Notes:

•    The Convention on the Constitution will meet on the weekend of Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 April with a view to reporting recommendations to the Houses of the Oireachtas on the constitutional provision for marriage for same-sex couples. For more information on the Convention on the Constitution see www.constitution.ie. The sessions will take place in the Grand Hotel, Malahide.

•    Presentations and panel sessions by legal and academic experts, and by advocacy organisations, will take place on Saturday 13 April. Advocacy group presentations will commence from 1pm.

•    The ICCL will join two other civil society organisations, the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) and Marriage Equality, in making the case for opening up civil marriage in Ireland to same-sex couples. The Convention will also hear contributions from a number of religious organisations opposed to extending civil marriage to same-sex couples, including the Knights of Columbanus, the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference and the Evangelical Alliance.

•    The ICCL’s submission to the Constitutional Convention is available on the Convention website HERE and on the Hear Our Voices website at http://www.hearourvoices.ie/submissions. Hear Our Voices is an initiative of The Irish Council for Civil Liberties, working to ensure that the voices of civil society organisations will be heard in an effective way during the constitutional convention process.


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