Changes to marriage law reflect changing Northern Ireland, says Armstrong

Kellie Armstrong Diversity

Changes to marriage law here reflect a changing Northern Ireland, Alliance MLA Kellie Armstrong has said.

The Strangford MLA was speaking after Finance Minister Conor Murphy announced his intention to change local marriage law, by including non-religious belief as the same basis as religious marriage and also raising the minimum age someone can legally marry or enter into a civil partnership from 16 with parental consent to 18.

“I am delighted these impending changes have been announced, particularly to ensure non-religious marriages are treated equally in law to faith marriages,” said Ms Armstrong.

“The public consultation on the matter showed a clear majority in favour of these reforms. While there have been temporary arrangements in place, once the Assembly returns they can be made permanent.

“Northern Ireland is a changing society and this move reflects that. Everybody does not fit into a specific definition, rather instead being part of the wealth of diversity across our community. It’s time everyone respected people of other beliefs in law.”