independent

Monday 21 April 2014

Civil partners in every county as 2,600 tie the knot

RTE’s Michael Murphy (left) and Terry O'Sullivan, who tied the knot in a civil partnership in 2011. Picture: MARK CONDREN
RTE’s Michael Murphy (left) and Terry O'Sullivan, who tied the knot in a civil partnership in 2011. Picture: MARK CONDREN

MORE than 2,600 people entered into formal same-sex partnerships up to the end of 2013, new figures show.

The statistics reveal that couples in every county in Ireland entered into civil partnerships. A civil partnership provides most of the legal rights and obligations that apply to civil marriage.

The Civil Partnership Act passed through the Oireachtas in July 2010 and the first public civil partnership was celebrated in April 2011.

There were 728 civil partnerships in total for lesbian and gay couples living in Dublin city and county.

Tiernan Brady, policy director of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN), said: "Civil Partnerships are a resounding success. Lesbian and gay couples in every county in Ireland have celebrated their love and commitment to each other in front of family, friends and neighbours.

"In doing so, these couples have contributed enormously to the remarkable progress towards marriage and full constitutional equality for lesbian and gay couples and families."

Many hundreds more lesbian and gay couples have demonstrated their commitment by entering civil partnerships or getting married abroad. These relationships are recognised in Ireland as civil partnerships.

After Co Dublin, Kildare had the most civil partnerships in Leinster with 40. In Ulster, Donegal had the most with 12 couples. Cork had the most civil partnerships in Munster with 106. In Connacht, Galway had 44 couples.

Among the well-known people in civil partnerships in Ireland are RTE newsreader Michael Murphy and his partner Terry O'Sullivan and TV3 presenter Alan Hughes and his partner Karl Broderick.

Senator Katherine Zappone, the first openly lesbian member of the Oireachtas, married her partner Dr Ann Louise Gilligan in Canada.

"The huge welcome for civil partnerships throughout the country shows that Ireland is ready to take the next step to provide for civil marriage for lesbian and gay couples," said Mr Brady.

Irish Independent

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