Green Party Dublin 15 representative, Roderic O’Gorman, has welcomed the commitment from the Minister for Justice, Brian Lenihan, to bring forward the heads of a bill on civil partnerships for same-sex couples by March of next year.
“I warmly welcome this commitment from the Minister for Justice. Ensuring that civil partnerships for same-sex couples were created during the life time of this Dail was one of the key aspects of the Programme for Government that they Green Party secured. Not only have we persuaded Fianna Fail of the need to create civil partnerships for same-sex couples, but these civil partnerships will be based on the recommendations of the Colley Group, which was set up to outline the best ways of protecting gay and lesbian relationships”, stated Roderic O’Gorman
O’Gorman also praised the Labour Party for bringing forward a bill on civil unions in the Dail during the week.
“During the week the Dail debated a Labour Party bill dealing with the issue of civil unions. While there were many positive aspects to this bill, the Minister for Justice judged it to be at risk of being found unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Had the Labour bill been passed and later, found unconstitutional, that would have set the entire process of achieving civil partnerships back by years. In light of this risk and the commitment by the Minister for Justice to rapidly bring forward legislation on civil partnerships, the Green Party voted against the Labour bill. We have received some criticism for doing this, but as someone who along with my partner, would hope to enjoy the benefits of civil partnerships as soon as possible, I would rather the Government acted cautiously and brought forward its own legislation that is not at risk of being struck down by the Supreme Court. I would view providing protection for same-sex couples as too important an issue to take chances with”, concluded Roderic O’Gorman.