Civil partnership is not marriage and therefore not equality - Mac Lochlainn
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Equality, Pádraig Mac Lochlainn TD, has highlighted the disparity between same sex and opposite sex unions, highlighting the inequality at the heart of civil partnership arrangements when gay couples are not offered the choice of civil marriage.
Deputy Mac Lochlainn said:
“Civil partnership is a second class version of marriage. What couple would swap their marriage certificate for a civil partnership version if it were possible to do so? Who dreams in their youth of being civil partnered? This referendum is about equality and equality alone.
“Of course marriage is more than just a symbolic union. Married couples have constitutional and legal protection. However civil partners only have legal protection. Legal protection is something which can be changed at any time by the Oireachtas. Constitutional protection can only be changed by the people’s vote in a referendum.
“Civil partnership is fundamentally different to civil marriage in a number of areas such as contract law, judicial separation as well as fiscal protection in certain cases. In short, civil partnerships fall short of full constitutional equality. Gay and lesbian couples want their committed, long term relationship to have the same legal recognition that marriage brings.
“The people of Ireland now have a historic opportunity bring equality to all of our citizens. Please vote Yes on May 22nd and make our country the first in the world to vote for Marriage Equality. Allow all the citizens of Ireland to love and live.”