Northern Irish people are allowed to criticize same-sex marriage


An anti-LGBT+ Christian group has reportedly won concessions from the government which will allow religious groups to dismiss members in case if they marry someone of their own sex. The Christian Institute said that the government’s Northern Ireland Office (NIO) has committed to protecting and emboldening homophobes through a series of legal measures, a day after it threatened to sue the government if there were no such protections implemented. The group on Friday, January 3, said that Northern Ireland secretary Julian Smith has written to government lawyers to raise a number of legal changes designed to underline that criticizing of same-sex marriages should not have been treated as an offence. The move will reportedly protect religious groups that dismiss staff who enter into same-sex marriages, and will ensure that religious bodies can’t be sued if they refused to support and conduct wedding ceremonies for same-sex couples. Ciaran Moynagh, a solicitor who specializ0es in human rights, told PinkNews that the changes as reported have always been included in the same-sex marriage regulations. He added that regardless of the changes, “criticism of same sex marriage would unlikely ever amount to an offence, and that is true given the full and frank debate we have witnessed in Northern Ireland for years.”


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