Sinn Féin spokesperson for the Arts, Youth Affairs and LGBTQI rights, Senator Fintan Warfield has called on Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to not stifle efforts to vindicate the LGBT people convicted under anti-homosexuality laws, and that a simple apology will not be enough if LGBT people will still hold wrongful criminal records.
Senator Warfield said:
“The Taoiseach and Micheal Martin TD exchanged views today in the Dáil on the potential state apology before the 25th anniversary of decriminalisation of homosexuality.
“The Taoiseach asserted the view that a cross party motion may go before the Dáil beforehand to allow for this but relented on the calls to exonerate, stating that there may be difficulties establishing the facts of certain cases.
“I would stress to the Taoiseach that every effort must be made to vindicate our institutionally persecuted LGBT community.
“He could take a number of measures including access to court records and amendments to spent convictions legislation that would allow for this.
“A simple apology is merely words unless every possible avenue to undo the decades of damage caused to those affected is considered.”