LGBT Ireland: Delays in progressing legislation for LGBT+ families are 'unacceptable'

The national organisation released a statement responding to the news it will be May 2020 before the commencement of the Children and Families Relationships Act.

A large group of LGBT+ parents and their children protest outside the Dáil

With the recent news that it will be May 2020 before the commencement of the Children and Families Relationships Act, LGBT Ireland have released a statement about the unacceptable delays in progressing legislation for LGBT+ families.

The statement read:

“The Government’s announcement that it will be next year, May of 2020 for the commencement of the Children and Families Relationships Act (2015) has come as a massive blow to LGBT+ families this week. The announcement, coupled with the vagueness of the Health Committee Report on the Assisted Human Reproduction Bill published earlier this month, has left LGBT+ families and friends completely frustrated and angered.

“Following repeated assurances by the Government in May that the Children and Family Relationships Act would be fully commenced by July, we at LGBT Ireland are deeply disappointed with this latest announcement by the Minister for Health.

“LGBT Ireland have grave concerns about the Governments’ handling of the legislation that has stalled for over four and a half years leaving children and their parents with effectively no state recognition or protections.

“This latest announcement is clearly contrary to previous statements made in 2015, last year, earlier this year and most recently in the run up to Pride month, to date seven deadlines have been missed. These repeated delays and missed deadlines have completely eroded confidence that the Government has the political will to extend legal rights and recognition to LGBT+ families.”

“It is now imperative that the Minister for Health and his Department commit the necessary resources to engage in concrete and sustained dialogue with all key stakeholders to rebuild that confidence. Real engagement is needed to get the law and systems in place that recognise and protect all children’s rights to legal recognition of their families.

“It is totally unacceptable that families will have to wait another year for the CFR Act, and in the case of the AHR Bill (2017) that a clear timeframe is not in place to progress this urgently needed legislation, according to Paula Fagan, CEO of LGBT Ireland and we are seeking a meeting with the Department and Minister for Health as a matter of urgency on these precise issues.”

During a discussion held at a legal seminar in June of this year, speakers including Paula Fagan from LGBT Ireland spoke about the continued delays in progressing legislation and how Ireland needs to recognise LGBT+ families as a matter of urgency.

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