Thousands To March To Demand Marriage Equality In Northern Ireland

Together For Yes campaign leader Ailbhe Smyth is lined up to speak at a rally which will precede the march led by Belfast Lord Mayor and will see thousands calling for the UK government to end the denial of rights in Northern Ireland.

Protesters march in Belfast

Thousands of people are expected to take to the streets of Belfast this weekend to call on Theresa May to legislate for marriage equality in Northern Ireland.

“There can be no second-class citizens in the UK. It is now up to Theresa May and the UK Government to deliver on the promise of equality.” said Patrick Corrigan, from Love Equality NI.

The march – organised by the Love Equality campaign – will take place across central Belfast and will be led by the City’s Lord Mayor, Councillor Nuala McAllister. It will end with a mass-rally in front of City Hall, hosted by Belfast actor Bronagh Waugh.

The protest comes amidst intensifying calls on Theresa May to reform Northern Ireland’s restrictive laws on same-sex marriage and access to abortion, and will put further pressure on the Prime Minister to commit to human rights obligations in Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK where equal marriage is outlawed.

Patrick Corrigan of the Love Equality campaign said:

“It’s nonsensical that the government is denying the people of Northern Ireland the same rights as everyone else in the UK. Human rights should not rely on postcodes.

“There can be no second-class citizens in the UK. It is now up to Theresa May and the UK Government to deliver on the promise of equality.

“Saturday’s march will show that Northern Ireland will not be silent until we have equality.”

Many activists will take part in this protest, most notably Ailbhe Smyth, a leader in both the successful Marriage Equality campaign and the recent Repeal the 8th campaign in the Republic of Ireland. Smyth will give a speech following the march to Belfast City Hall.

Many activists from the Republic has begun making their way up to Belfast to join the people of Northern Ireland in solidarity as they fight for equal rights.

Bi Ireland and Radical Queers Resist have organised a bus for anyone planning on making the journey, there are still a number of tickets available.

The Love Equality rally will meet at Writers’ Square at 2.30pm tomorrow, Saturday 2 June before setting off for a rally at Belfast City Hall. A rally for marriage equality will be staged in Guildhall Square, Derry/Londonderry at the same time.

© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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