By Peter McNamara
It was confirmed this morning that the GPA and the Women’s Gaelic Players Association are advocating a Yes vote in the forthcoming Marriage Equality Referendum.
GPA members were consulted and a player poll was an overwhelming endorsement – by a ratio of six to one – in favour of the GPA supporting the Yes campaign.
"The decision to support the Yes Equality Campaign was very much directed by the GPA membership who provided a powerful mandate for action," GPA chief executive Dessie Farrell said.
"Of course there are differing views within the playing body as there are in society in general, but we believe that by endorsing the Yes campaign we are providing active representation for our players while also acting in accordance with our principles as an organisation."
The WGPA Executive also consulted members on providing public support for the Marriage Referendum.
Members indicated that they were very much in favour of the WGPA taking a definitive stance on this debate, with 97% support for marriage equality.
WGPA chairperson Aoife Lane commented: "The WGPA is committed to achieving equality for women in sport and in this instance, is keen to support marriage equality for women and men.
"The WGPA is working to help members achieve happiness and fulfilment on and off the field; a Yes vote provides a further opportunity for all players as well as family members and friends to achieve this."
A press release from the GPA stated: "The GPA is acutely aware that there are differing opinions within the membership and encourages all members to support their individual principles on May 22.
"However, the Association leadership felt that the issue of marriage equality was of serious importance to an organisation representing young athletes and thus required action on its part.
"It was also considered essential that, in the context of the debate, the GPA would stand by its guiding principles of diversity, commitment, compassion and transparency."