People Before Profit launched their campaign for a ‘YES’ vote in the upcoming Marriage Equality referendum today in Buswells Hotel on Molesworth Street in Dublin. The People Before Profit Yes to Marriage Equality Campaign was launched by People Before Profit Chair and member of the YES EQUALITY campaign, Ailbhe Smyth; Richard Boyd Barrett TD, Adrienne Wallace, People Before Profit candidate in the Carlow-Kilkenny by-election and Cllr Barry Martin who is a People Before Profit candidate in the upcoming general election representing North County Dublin and People Before Profit spokesperson on Equality and Youth Affairs.
People Before Profit believes that Constitutional rights should apply equally to all the citizens of Ireland. Marriage is a civil right, and should be available to all citizens whatever their gender. People should be free to marry if that is what they wish. We strongly support the YES EQUALITY campaign and will continue to fight to achieve full equality for LGBT people, and for all the people of Ireland. People Before Profit have been campaigning rigorously for a Yes vote in the Marriage Equality referendum as well as holding public meetings all across the country. There has been particular emphasis on getting young people registered to vote and encouraging them to get out on the 22nd May to vote.
Alibhe Smyth said: “A win in the Marriage Equality referendum on 22nd May would send a crystal clear message to LGBT people, and especially to young LGBTS, that we are equal citizens in every respect. It would send a crystal clear message that discrimination, prejudice and intolerance have no place in modern Ireland. This referendum is about equality, justice and human rights. A ‘yes’ vote means very simply that we believe LGBT people should have the same rights as everyone else”.
Richard Boyd Barrett said: “This is a watershed moment for Irish society. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to leave a dark past of prejudice, oppression and discrimination behind us and look forward to a future of equality and justice. We should not be deflected by the disingenuous arguments of those who wish to drag us back to a dark past. This referendum is about establishing a republic of equals. It is in the spirit of the 1916 proclamation which called for a republic which cherished all of the children equally. In a decent society no-one should have to live in fear or shame or be treated as lesser because of who they are. This isn’t simply about the right to marriage for LGBT people, it is about making a statement that equality of rights and freedoms for all of our citizens is the hallmark of our society. I would urge everyone to come out and vote ‘Yes’ on May 22nd.
Adrienne Wallace said: “This referendum is solely concerned with enabling the gay community to have the same rights to civil marriage that the straight community have. It has nothing to do with marriage in the Catholic Church, or any other religious institute, and it has nothing to do with adoption or child rearing. Gay parents can already adopt through the Child & Family Relationships bill passed by the Dáil. If you vote ‘yes’ you are ensuring that they will live in a society that treats them the same as everybody else. This referendum is about human rights, the right to be treated with dignity, the right to be treated equally. Love transcends all boundaries- acknowledge that and respect it. Vote Yes on May 22nd”.
Barry Martin said: “At its the core the Marriage Equality Referendum is about basic human and civil rights. A ‘Yes’ vote is a vote for justice and equality. It is absolutely crucial that young people get out and vote on the day. Young people are massively in favour of Marriage Equality but are traditionally less likely to vote. Therefore I would strongly urge young people to make sure they are registered to vote by the deadline on the 5th of May. When campaigning for a ‘Yes’ vote we should always keep in mind LGBT teenagers who do not have the vote yet. 60% of LGBT teenagers experience homophobic bullying in their schools while 20% say they have skipped school through fear and intimidation. By passing the referendum we will be sending a clear message to them, that they are not alone. They deserve an equal voice in our society”.