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Referendum on same-sex marriage to take place in first half of 2015

5th November 2013 - Alan Shatter TD

The Government today considered the Third Report of the Convention on the Constitution, Amending the Constitution to provide for same-sex marriage. The Government agreed to the holding of a referendum during the first half of 2015.

Speaking today the Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence, Alan Shatter TD, said “I am very pleased that in response to the memo that I brought to Cabinet, the Government today agreed to hold a referendum on same-sex marriage during the first half of 2015. My Department will be engaged over the next 12 months with the Attorney General on the framing of the specific amendment to the Constitution and on the drafting of the Bill required for the referendum on this important matter.

“Following on from the Government’s decision, I will shortly report to the Dáil on the Government’s positive response to the Constitutional Convention’s Third Report. The Government shares the concern of Mr. Tom Arnold, the Chairman of the Constitutional Convention that people be better informed in relation to referendums and is also concerned to ensure that questions put to the people in referendums give rise to no misunderstanding or confusion. These are issues the Government will be giving further consideration to and it is also considering the possibility of a referendum commission being appointed earlier than has been the case up to now.”

Minister Shatter also today gave the Cabinet a general briefing on the Children and Family Relationships Bill 2013, a draft of which he hopes to bring to Cabinet prior to Christmas. Details of the issues it is proposed the Bill will address are accessible on the Justice website (

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