Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Three Quarters Of Irish Voters Approve Of Same-Sex Marriage

Moninne Griffith via Twitter
By Brody Levesque | DUBLIN, Ireland -- As the Constitutional Convention met in Dublin to discuss reforms to the Irish Republic's constitution this past weekend, a 2012 year end poll showed increased support for the issue of same-sex marriage, which is one of the legal reforms being discussed by delegates.
The poll, carried out by Millward Brown Lansdowne for the Irish LGBT Equality Rights advocacy group Marriage Equality, found that 75% of Irish voters in this predominantly Roman Catholic nation would vote yes in a referendum to extend civil marriage to same sex couples – an increase of 12% from previous research in 2008. Marriage equality has been placed on the official agenda for Ireland's Constitutional Convention discussions scheduled for mid-April.
In a statement released Monday, Marriage Equality's Director Moninne Griffith said; 
“Public support for marriage equality has increased year on year.  When we began our work in 2006, 51% of people believed same sex couples should be allowed to marry.  That figure has grown 25% in just 6 years, to a full three quarters of the population today.  People all over Ireland know that marriage equality is about truly Irish values like justice, equality, fairness, and respect for each other. This is our chance to do the right thing, and be leaders in the movement for marriage equality.  The polling shows Irish people want this.  Ireland is ready, with a strong majority of Irish people who think same sex couples should have the right to marry the person they love.”
Griffith added:
“Now is the time for marriage equality. This Convention is the opportunity for us as a country to take the next step as a modern, democratic country that has respect for diversity and that believes in equality for all families.  We look forward to working with the members of the Constitutional Convention to protect same sex couples and families, and to ensure that they are treated equally under the law by enshrining marriage equality in the Irish Constitution.”
Poll Results:
84% - more than 8 out of 10 - people agree that everyone in Ireland should receive equal treatment from the state, regardless of whether they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or heterosexual.
•    90% agreement among 25-34 year olds
•    88% agreement among parents
In 2008 this figure was 81%.
72% - nearly 3 out of 4 – people believe that denying civil marriage to same sex couples is a form of discrimination.
•    84% of 25-34 year olds agree
•    single people (79%) and parents (78%) are more likely to agree
In 2008 this figure was 63% - an increase of over 10%.
71% of people believe that the Irish Government should amend the law to provide access to civil marriages for same-sex couples.  (“The Government should amend the law to provide access to civil marriages for same-sex couples”)
In 2008 this figure was just over half the population – an increase of nearly 20%.  (“Gay and lesbian couples should be allowed to marry in a registry office”)
2 out of 3 people agree Ireland’s reputation as a modern society will be strengthened by allowing same sex couples to have civil marriages.
3 out of 5 people agree that allowing same sex couples to have civil marriages will promote a more tolerant environment in Ireland.
75% of people (aged 18+) said they would vote yes in a referendum to extend civil marriage to same sex couples
In 2008 this figure was 63% - an increase of 12%.
Support is highest among women, 18 to 34 year olds, parents and unmarried cohabiting couples.
Breakdown by Age 2012 2008
18-24 88% 81%
25-34 84% 75%
35-49 82% 70%
50-64 74% 52%
Over 65 43% 27%
The biggest increases in support came from farmers (60% - up from 32% in 2008) and those aged 50-64 (74% - up from 52% in 2008).
When asked about same-sex couples and their children…
•    69% of people agree that being raised in a loving home by loving parents is a more significant factor for a child’s well-being than being raised by a mother and a father
•    60% agree that the definition of a family in the Irish Constitution should change to include same-sex families
•    54% agree that same-sex couples should be legally allowed to jointly adopt a child
2008 sample included respondents aged 15+.  
2012 sample included respondents aged 16+/18+ (for voting questions)