Longford’s Ógra Fianna Fáil recently joined with the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) community to celebrate ‘Dublin Pride 2012’. Chairperson of Longford’s Ogra Fianna Fail, Síona Cahill, attended the march on Saturday last (June 30) and said: “It was a fantastic event. It was incredibly positive. Ógra members marched with older members of the party as well as elected representatives such as Senator Averil Power.”
The parade began at The Garden of Remembrance, and made its way to Merrion Square. It was the first year Fianna Fáil marched in the Pride.
“Supporting this event, a march for LGBT pride and civil rights, is not about symbolism. It’s about indicating the wider support for equality that is part of who we are as an organisation, and to mark out what we still need to achieve,” said Ms Cahill (20), a student at NUI Maynooth.
Fianna Fáil’s parade banner included the slogan ‘Pride in Action’, which Ms Cahill explained: “Fianna Fáil have in fact acted, by far more than any other political party, towards making equal rights a reality for LGBT members. Recent successes include the development of Civil Partnership in 2010, and establishing much needed legislation for equality in areas such as employment rights and financial rights. Ireland has some way to go in this area.”
Ms Cahill went on to outline her disappointment that recent Fianna Fáil proposals were blocked by Government parties in the Seanad.
“Senator Averil Power recently proposed a bill concerning the rights of employment for LGBT people while teaching in schools. The reasonable proposals drafted were cynically shot down by Labour and Fine Gael, despite the fact that they protest to be parties promoting equality and equal opportunity.
“If parties can’t make a bipartisan effort on an issue that they say they agree with, it undermines the genuine nature of the issues involved here. Progress can be made, even if it is slowly, but cynical party politics should have no room in debates of basic civil rights.”
At the recent Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis, it was voted to adopt an equal marriage policy, and to work with groups to develop progress on LGBT issues.
To see more about Longford Ógra, see longfordogra.wordpress.com, and on Twitter and Facebook.
For further information on LGBT issues, make sure to log on to www.glen.ie.