Marriage Equality Signed into Law in Ireland

Marriage Equality in Ireland in May 2015

Ireland in May became the world's first country to pass marriage equality by popular vote and celebration erupted across the country Thursday when it passed a final hurdle and became law, according to Irish media outlets.

The bill was signed into law by the president of Ireland, Michael Higgins, and marriages are expected to begin as early as November, according to the Irish Times.

Irish elected official Katherine Zappone, who is from Washington state and married her wife in Canada, praised the country for its progress. "Just like 100-years ago a defining moment has been reached in our development as a nation and together we are sending out a message to the world that Ireland is a country where people continue to believe in equality for all,” she stated in TheJournal.ie.

In May, the predominantly Catholic country made history by passing a referendum in favor of defining marriage as the union of two people “without distinction as to their sex.” During that poll, over 62 percent of voters cast ballots supporting marriage equality, according to Agence France-Presse.

In addition to the passage of this law, Ireland recently made history by giving citizens the right to define their own gender identities.

Watch as people in Ireland celebrated passage of the referendum in May:

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