Students Voting YES
in Divorce Referendum, May 24th
Four years to the day after Marriage Equality was passed on 22 May 2015, students are once again calling for change to the Irish constitution to ensure a more modern and compassionate approach to divorce in Ireland for families
The Union of Students in Ireland are encouraging students to vote yes in the Divorce Referendum taking place this Friday, 24th May, after a decision to support a ‘Yes’ vote at the most recent meeting of the USI National Council in Waterford.
Currently, the laws on Divorce in Ireland state that a married couple must be living apart for at least 4 years before they can consider divorcing one another, it also states that divorces that take place outside of the state are not legally recognised in Ireland. Students recognise that these laws are outdated and in particular don’t take into account the number of Irish migrants that move their lives abroad and indeed divorce abroad, and are also cumbersome for many of those who are seeking to leave abusive relationships.
USI President, Síona Cahill stated;
“The constitution is not the place to deal with the complexities of personal and familial relationships, and certainly no one gets married expecting to ever have to separate or divorce, but we need to update our mechanisms for supporting families through what is already a difficult situation.
The necessary separation of a couple, for a myriad of reasons, with due regard for family and property, is never an easily taken decision, but one that is deemed best by those affected. We need to respect that decision and make the process less traumatic, and shorter, for everyone involved. People need to be enabled to move on with their lives in the best way possible, and laws must be updated to reflect this. No one will have to apply after two years, but facilitates that if a couple wishes to do so.
We are asking students to use their vote to show compassion to those who need it, and vote yes on this Friday 24th May.”