Staff at the Cork Marriage Counselling Centre (CMCC) have move swiftly to disassociate themselves from the centre's directors to refuse counselling services to same-sex couples. The decision not to sign an agreement with state agency Tusla that would require CMCC tocomply with equality legislation was made by the directors without consultation with the centre's counselling staff. As a consequence, funding amounting to between €250,000 and €300,000 per annum has been withdrawn.
It appears that the refusal stems from a provision in the centre's constitution that prohibits the provision of services to same-sex couples. While they are perfectly entitled to do so, they have no been brought face-to-face with the fact that Bunreacht na hÉireann trumps their rule book when it comes to the allocation of state funding. While I have some sympathy with the CMCC's staff and clients who are likely to suffer as a result, it's good to see agencies of the state uphold the laws of the state and the democratically expressed wishes of the citizenship.
The Irish Times covers the story here: Marriage counselling centre loses funding because it will not help gay couples