The motion to officially support same-sex marriage was tabled by Councillor Maurice Quinlivan of Sinn Féin, and was supported by Councillors Maria Byrne, Jim Long, Diarmuid Scully and Michael Hourigan, all of Fine Gael, as well as Tom Shortt and Joe Leddin of the Labour Party.
Councillor Quinlivan told Irish media that the reasoning behind the motion was based on the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic, which states that all of Ireland’s children are equal.
“As an Irish Republican,” Quinlivan told the Limerick Leader, “I look to the 1916 Proclamation as the template for equality as it says ‘to cherish all the children of the nation equally’. Nowhere does it say we must treat gay children, black children or disabled children differently. This is why I’m proposing the motion.”
According to local entertainment website, ilovelimerick.ie, cheering erupted from the public gallery in Limerick’s City Hall as members of the local LGBT community, including their supporters, celebrated the council’s unanimous support.
Limerick City Council now joins local councils such as Belfast City Council, Newry & Mourne District Council, Dún Laoghaire / Rathdown County Council, Dublin City Council and others in their official support of marriage equality across Ireland. While local authorities in Ireland are unable to legislate for marriage equality in their regions (as that is up to the Dublin and Stormont governments) the councils’ support is warmly welcomed by the island’s LGBT community.