Government to ‘expunge’ historic convictions for homosexuality

The Government will bring forward legislation by the end of the year to expunge convictions for homosexuality by the end of the year.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar made the announcement at a reception in Dublin Castle marking the 25th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1993.

Referring to Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan’s apology to gay and bisexual men last week, Mr Vadkar said: “We want to go further and expunge those convictions as well. We need to work on those detailed proposals and have them by the end of the year.”

A bill to pardon gay and bisexual men in Ireland was presented to the Seanad by Labour Senator Ged Nash in 2016.

The Convictions for Certain Sexual Offences (Apology and Exoneration) Bill 2016 passed the second stage in the Seanad last year without Government opposition but has not progressed further.