Ireland sets a date for gay marriage vote

Over two thirds of Irish people support same-sex marriage

Gay marriage vote set for Republic of Ireland.

Ireland has set a month for a referendum on marriage equality.

Groups both for and against same-sex marriage will rally as they prepare for the public vote in early May 2015. No specific date has been announced as of yet.

The issue was discussed today by Ministers at their final meeting before Christmas.

It comes as Scottish gay couples are finally able to get married today, following England and Wales earlier this year. There are currently no plans for Northern Ireland to pass same-sex marriage.

Independent Senator Katherine Zappone is campaigning to marry her partner Ann Louise Gilligan.

‘Confirmation that the referendum on same sex marriage is set to go ahead will be welcomed by all who have campaigned to bring us to this point,’ she said.

‘While it is right that we should acknowledge the importance of the cabinet decision and the hope it offers those in love and seeking love, we should also be mindful that there remains some distance to go.

‘The next stage is to see the wording of the proposal which will be put before people, as a public representative and social justice campaigner I will be working to ensure that it is clear, straightforward and fair.

‘Engagement with young voters is also key and I want to see the Government outline its plans to get them to use their right to vote and make history in 2015.’

She continued: ‘As we head to the New Year I would ask all who intend to get involved in this campaign to ensure that the public debate is conducted in a fair and open way with the language of respect rather than confrontation and division.

‘I look forward to 2015 with hope that when presented with the proposal in a proper manner that the Irish people will see what is just and right and vote accordingly.’

Support for same-sex marriage has been steadily growing over the last few months. In the last Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll, it found 71% supported marriage equality in Ireland

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