Led by Alliance, support for the motion signalled the first time Northern Ireland’s biggest Council voted in favour of Equal Marriage and follows the overwhelming yes vote during the referendum in Ireland last month.
The debate is the latest action by Alliance to engage on the issue, aiming to move the debate forward in Northern Ireland, recognising that dialogue and mutual respect is essential as many continue on their personal journey with the issue.
Councillor Emmet McDonough-Brown said: “This vote is in line with the Alliance Party’s commitment to delivering a shared society for everyone, based on civil and religious liberty and equality for all – regardless of age, gender, disability, race, ethnicity or sexual orientation.
“Northern Ireland is increasingly out of step on equality issues. Like many others I watched the results come in from Ireland’s referendum and was moved by the jubilation on display and Belfast City Council has tonight given the LGBT community across Northern Ireland another reason to be hopeful.
“Alliance supports the extension of state provided civil marriage to same sex couples, while recognising protections are needed for those faith groups that wish to continue to observe and practise marriage within their beliefs, and this motion doesn’t change that.
“As a group, Alliance has continually led the way on LGBT issues, including adoption and tackling homophobic bullying in schools, and I’m delighted to be part of an Alliance team taking this forward across Northern Ireland, as we continue to engage with everyone.”