Irish Ad Campaign Proves We Are Family
An ad campaign designed to raise awareness about lesbian and gay families across Ireland has been launched by lobby group Marriage Equality, Gay Community News has reported.
Through the campaign, entitled We Are Family, Marriage Equality hopes to dispell some of the myths surrounding lesbian and gay families – and help people realize that these families are still second-class citizens when it comes to the law.
Last year, when Irish politicians and the public were debating civil partnership and same-sex marriage legislation, Marriage Equality – which, as its name suggests, was and still is in favor of equal marriage rights for same-sex couples – brought us a brilliant ad, entitled Sinead’s Hand. The ad depicts a young man traveling around Ireland, asking every person for permission to propose to a woman (Sinead), and compares this ridiculous scenario with the situation that same-sex couples found themselves in.
Though the civil partnership bill that was brought in gives unmarried couples living together more legal protection than they previously had, Marriage Equality argues that, until lesbian and gay couples are allowed to get married and have the full protection for themselves and their children that marriage affords, there will be no equal rights.
As the We Are Family campaign was launched, Moninne Griffith, the director of Marriage Equality said:
Some people in Ireland might not know a lesbian or gay family, and so We Are Family is an introduction of sorts to the wonderful diversity of Irish family life. What is often forgotten too, is that apart from the immediate lesbian or gay family unit, these families are also sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews, even grandmothers and grandfathers. They are already interwoven into Ireland's family fabric and the Government must move to recognise this fact.
Marriage Equality board member Orla Howard added:
Equal marriage rights for same-sex couples will lead to the recognition and protection of lesbian and gay families. The Government's Civil Partnership Bill on the other hand, continues to deny the existence of same-sex families and ignores their children entirely. This leaves these families legally vulnerable in matters such as inheritance, access, maintenance and so on.
Ireland is not the only European country that has struggled with issues surrounding civil partnership versus marriage. In The Netherlands, the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriages, civil partnerships were introduced 1999. It was not until two years later that same-sex couples were able to get married.