Delegates from the ICTU conference in Belfast pledge their support for equal marriage in Northern Ireland

Today the Trade Unions Love Equality campaign was officially launched at the biennial Irish Congress of Trade Unions conference in Belfast today. The launch was attended by delegates from across Northern and southern Ireland and comprehensive discussion on marriage equality was chaired by ICTU chair Seamus Dooley.

Local couple, Diane Marks & Andrea Hope spoke of their desire to see marriage equality implemented in Northern Ireland.


“We live here, our friends are here. We want our friends to take place in our special day when it happens.” Diane said, “Why should we have to go somewhere else to get married? This is our home and we should be able to get married in Northern Ireland.”

Seamus Dooley of ICTU stressed the importance of the Trade Union movement in facilitating conversations on marriage equality in Northern Ireland, saying that they are “uniquely placed” to reach people who may not be aware of the campaign or the issues at stake. Seamus also spoke of the difference in treatment between civil marriage and Civil Partnerships by saying that “nobody gets down on one knee and asks their loved one “Will you be my civil partner?””

John O’Doherty of Love Equality NI and Director of the Rainbow Project spoke of his own engagement and plan to marry in February of next year, saying “I’m not going anywhere else to get married. I live in this city, I work in this city. Why should I have to go somewhere else to marry my partner?”

From left to right: John O Doherty of Love Equality, Seamus Dooley of ICTU, Andrea Hope, and Diane Marks with guide dogs Maurice and Debbie.


The Irish Congress of Trade Unions is an active member of the Love Equality campaign. For more information contact us at