Equality maintained in the North!

Via BreakingNews.ie

The motion was on the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations

During the debate, the DUP and Ulster Unionist Party criticised the British government for implementing the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations in the North on January 1 ahead of the rest of the UK and for holding only a two-month consultation in the North.

For a change im glad that Sinn Fein are on this side of Equality

After a tense two-hour debate at Stormont, 39 Assembly members voted in favour of the DUP motion and 39 against.

The dead heat meant that the motion was not carried.

SF, accussed the DUP of Homophobia

Sinn Féin equality spokeswoman Caitriona Ruane accused the DUP of whipping up homophobic sentiment with the motion.

“This motion is part of yesterday’s agenda, part of the bad old days of the past,” the South Down MLA argued.

“Move on – show leadership. Days of second-class citizenship and hiding our identities are gone.”

The SDLP aslo opposed the motion

SDLP equality spokeswoman Patricia Lewsley, whose party`s youth wing staged a protest against the motion outside Parliament Buildings, accused the DUP of scaremongering and said it was untrue to claim that the regulations would punish faith-run schools.

All they will prevent is discrimination and harassment – not the teaching of religious doctrine,” the Lagan Valley MLA countered.

“Harassment only occurs if there is unwanted conduct which has purpose or intent of violating dignity or creating an intimidating, degrading or offensive environment

The Alliance Party pointed out that ‘673 responses which covered all the main religious groupings in the North and all the key organisations with an interest.’ and also David Ford, Alliance Party leader and South Antrim MLA, pointed out

“I am not sure that there would have been any different response had there been another four weeks or another 14 weeks,” he said.

The Progressive Unionist also opposed the DUP motion, David Irvine

“Equality is equality is equality,” the East Belfast MLA declared.

“If any human being is left out of the entitlement for equality, then we deny ourselves proper equality. It is either for everyone or it is for no one.”

I thought I’d never be parising SF, the SDLP and the Progressive Unionist in the same post!

Author: Stephen

Cork born and bred, proud European and Irishman. Involved in many organisations and politics. Also writes for SpirtualityIreland.org and UCC Express.

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