Michael D. Higgins Signs Same-Sex Marriage Into Constitution

On Saturday, President Michael D. Higgins signed the result of May's referendum in the Constitution - but there still will be a wait for the first same-sex weddings.

The crowd at Dublin Castle and President Michael D. Higgins

President Higgins has signed the 34th Amendment to the Constitution (Marriage Equality) Act on Saturday, so that “marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex.”

Kieran Rose, Chair of GLEN welcomed the news saying, “This is a historic moment for LGBT people and everyone in Ireland. After the joyful scenes that followed the resounding Yes vote last May it is wonderful that President Higgins has signed the Act and made the result official.”

Before the law is enacted, the Government will bring forward the Marriage Bill 2015. This Bill will be introduced in Dáil Éireann in September, which will be when the necessary changes are made.

“We look forward to the Oireachtas passing the necessary enabling legislation to allow the first civil marriages for lesbian and gay people to take place as soon as it returns. As a nation, all of us can now look forward to the civil marriages that so many lesbian and gay people, their family members and friends have long awaited,” Rose added.

However, the law may be delayed further by two individuals who are disputing the Yes result. Their applications to bring petitions to challenge the result were rejected by both the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

The two men have now sought leave to appeal the outcome of the marriage referendum to the Supreme Court. They have seven days to lodge their papers with the Supreme Court.

© 2015 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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