Northern Irish Assembly to vote on gay marriage for a FIFTH time

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Stormont will vote on same-sex marriage for a fifth time in coming weeks.

Sinn Féin has uged all SDLP members to support a measure to legalise same-sex marriage.

Northern Ireland has been criticised for being the only major territory in the UK not to have equal marriage after Scotland, England and Wales passed it in 2013.

The last time Stormont voted on the issue was in April this year, when it was defeated by 49 votes to 47.

SDLP MLAs were criticised at the time for not turning up to the close ballot.

Sinn Féin’s Grace McDermott called on MLA Joe Byrne in particular to vote on the measure.

She said: “Politicians have a duty to stand up for everyone and Sinn Féin has been to the fore in supporting marriage equality. We have brought a motion four times now but unfortunately it has not been passed,” Mrs McDermott said.

“The DUP has a tendency to bring a petition of concern and last time the motion fell by just two votes.

“On November 2 a joint motion from Sinn Féin and the SDLP will be tabled and hopefully this one will be passed.

“The SDLP claim to support same marriage equality but Joe Byrne has not shown up for any of the votes. I would be calling on him and I would be asking everyone to come forward on November 2 and vote in favour of marriage equality.”