It’s a day for the history books for Northern Ireland as the entire island of Ireland now has same-sex marriage and abortion rights.
— Greg Owen (@Greg0wen) October 21, 2019
The ban on same-sex marriage and abortion rights was lifted at midnight last night just over a year after the 8th amendment was repealed in the Republic of Ireland.
In July, Parliament voted to pass the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation etc.) Act, which obliges the Government to act if the devolved Northern Ireland Executive has not been re-established by October 21 2019.
By midnight tonight Marriage Equality will be legally recognised in Northern Ireland!
— Blu Hydrangea (@BluHydrangea_) October 21, 2019
Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2020, will be the date of the first same-sex weddings in Northern Ireland, Love Equality campaigners have confirmed with UK Government Ministers.
The legalisation of same-sex marriages in the region is due to come into effect on January 13 2020, and with couples having to wait the standard 28 days to elapse after they submit their notice of intention to marry, the first same-sex weddings are expected to be celebrated on Valentine’s Day.
Campaigners and same-sex couples gathered across Northern Ireland to celebrate with pictures of couples getting engaged as the changes came into effect appearing on social media.
There was no hanging about from these ones… 🏳️🌈🌻
The Northern Ireland Bill delivers long-awaited abortion law reform, including decriminalisation. This will stop women being prosecuted for accessing abortion and introduce a suspension for current cases.
I remember the day @siobhni and I took part in this protest and a member of the press glibly asked us whether we thought protests would actually make a difference
So much love to you Northern Ireland ❤️ pic.twitter.com/RGu6RQ63PJ
— 🔮Nicola Coughlan 🌙 (@nicolacoughlan) October 21, 2019
The law also states that Westminster must introduce regulations which will bring Northern Ireland’s abortion law into line with human rights standards outlined by the recommendations of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) by March 31 2020.
Monday becomes Tuesday in Northern Ireland, and with it the decriminalisation of abortion and the legalisation of same-sex marriage. One of the most extraordinary yet understated political developments in NI in years.
— Stephen McNeice (@maccytothedee) October 21, 2019
Claire Brophy and Emma Allen from Abortion Rights Campaign said: “Free, safe, and legal abortion access on the island of Ireland has been a goal of the abortion rights campaign since our founding in 2012.
“The success of the repeal movement last year was made possible with the support and solidarity of our siblings in the North. Northern Ireland is now an outlier for its lack of abortion access, and this situation must now end. We are proud to stand with our siblings in Northern Ireland who deserve access to the same rights as everyone else on this island.”
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