Northern Ireland and same-sex marriage: the story continues

Though same-sex marriage is legal in England, Wales and Scotland, there is no such provision in Northern Ireland and, as we have mentioned before, moves to institute it have been blocked consistently by the  Democratic Unionist Party. The DUP has repeatedly filed Petitions of Concern in the Stormont Assembly, with the effect of preventing equal marriage legislation from any kind of progress. The result is that same-sex marriages from elsewhere in the UK are treated as civil partnerships.

The Belfast Telegraph reports that a same-sex couple in Northern Ireland who married in England in 2014 are seeking a declaration that they are validly married, arguing that the current law violates their religious freedom under Article 9 ECHR. Despite being together for some time, they chose not to have a civil partnership ceremony in Northern Ireland because it had no religious significance for them; instead, they were married in London in September after same-sex marriage was introduced in England. Continue reading