As this year’s annual Pride celebrations have had to adapt due to COVID-19, Joleen takes a look back at the remarkable result that made Ireland the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage by popular vote.

She speaks to a major Yes Equality Campaign member about the lead-up to the country going to the polls, and the first same-sex wedding in the Republic which took place in Co. Tipperary.

Summer 2020 marks the 5 year anniversary of the Marriage Equality referendum, but just 30 years ago it was illegal to live as a homosexual person in Ireland.

The ban of homosexuality was completely abolished in the country by 1993 with great thanks to the phenomenal work of gay rights activists nationwide.


David Norris speaks to Beat about his involvement with the progression of the movement, while Waterford man Des O’ Keefe shares his personal story about being openly gay in the early 1990s and how far the Irish nation has come since then.

The landmark moment in history was not the only world first to come from the referendum.

In 2016, a nationwide report was published, a ground-breaking study of the mental health of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people in Ireland.

The LGBTIreland Report – the world’s first national LGBTI Youth Strategy – was the result of a partnership between GLEN, BeLonG To and The National Office for Suicide Prevention and Trinity College Dublin.

Joleen also chats with services in the region that offer support to young people and adults seeking help.

For more information on services available in your area or if you wish to seek support – you can visit BeLongTo.org.

You can listen back to Pathway to Pride that aired Sunday, June 28th on The Sunday Grill right here:

Beat · Pathway To Pride
Archive audio courtesy of Newstalk.
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