Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Marriage in Ireland vs. Marriage in Australia

Interesting statistics in an article in the Irish Independent online giving an overview of marriage in the Republic of Ireland in 2011. I had a look and then thought, "Well, I wonder how Australia compares?" A quick search popped up relevant Australian Bureau of Statistics information for 2011.

Ireland

Population in 2011: 4,600,000 (approx.)
Marriages in 2011: 19,855

That's 4.3 out of every 1000 Irish folk married in 2011.

Median age at marriage in 2011: Male = 34.6 yrs / Female = 32.5 yrs
Percentage of marriages performed by a Civil Celebrant: 29%

Australia

Population in 2011: 22,400,000 (approx.)
Marriages in 2011: 121,752

That's 5.3 out of every 1000 Australian folk married in 2011.

Median age at marriage in 2011: Male = 31.4 yrs / Female = 29.3 yrs
Percentage of marriages performed by a Civil Celebrant: 70.1%


Given that Ireland is a predominantly Catholic country, it's perhaps not surprising that Civil Ceremonies account for such a small percentage of ceremonies performed.It's also interesting to note that these figures for Ireland show the marriage rate as falling, being at its lowest rate since 1998. Of course this, together with the fact that there were 536 same-sex civil partnerships registered in Ireland in 2011, is being used by a pro-marriage group - the Iona Institute - to bemoan the state of marriage and claim that the decline is evidence of a 'collapse in marriage'!

In Australia, the marriage rate to 2011 was actually increasing. The slight increase over 2010 figures maintained the general rise seen since 2001, from 104,000 marriages to the 2011 figure of 121,752!


Image: Green harp flag of IrelandCreative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license