This is the full text of the speech delivered by Chris Curran who is the Sinn Féin Local Election candidate for Glencullen/Sandyford in Dublin
Chris Curran Dublin Cuige, speaking in support to motion 162 that calls for the endorsement, by the Ard Fheis of Sinn Féin’s LGBT discussion document ‘Equality, Diversity, and Solidarity - Fighting with Pride for LGBT rights in Ireland’.
The document discusses a wide range of issues effecting LGBT people, including the Blood Ban, Employment Equality, Marriage Equality, Gender Recognition, Adoption and Access to IVF treatment.
It will result in the most radical, forward thinking LGBT policy document in Ireland.
Much as FG, FF and Lab create the illusion that they’ve done so much for the LGBT community, we must remain mindful that they governed while LGBT people were criminalised, demonised and even murdered while the state turned its back.
Successive Irish Governments failed to have the moral courage to stand up for what was right.
We must never forget that the Irish Government was shamed into the decriminalisation of homosexuality by the European Court on Human Rights.
The prolonged effect of this state-led discrimination has, not only, left a legacy of inequality, mental health issues and descrimination, it leaves overt & subtle homo & transphobia unhindered to undermine & demean LGBT people.
This isn’t just an Irish phenomenon, the disgusting legislation adopted in Russia & Uganda sends a message around the world that gay people are something other than normal. In an Irish context, we have a state broadcaster unable to cope when challenged with subtle homophobia being brought to the surface.
In fact, when our own LGBT Gardai are prevented from marching at Gay Pride in their uniforms, while their European colleagues look on in amazement, shows an evermore need, not just for legislative change but a change in societal attitudes towards LGBT people.
The Irish Government can effect this.
They can admit to their role in the higher than average rates of suicide, mental health and self-harm endured by LGBT people.
They can take acknowledge the thousands those who lost their lives due to their reluctance to legislate.
Delegates, Sinn Féin’s discussion document aims to tackle the sources of LGBT inequality in Irish society.
To that end I would strongly encourage you to give resounding support to this motion to show that Sinn Féin not just supports the gay community but that we intend Ireland to lead Europe in LGBT equality.