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Motions

You will be able to view which Motions passed or failed below as they are voted on during the Ard Fheis.

Delivering A Fair Recovery

Motion 1

This Ard Fheis notes:
• Sinn Féin is totally opposed to the introduction of domestic household water charges and believes that they can be defeated.
• Sinn Féin in government blocked the introduction of domestic water charges in the Six Counties and is committed to reversing them, if in government, in the 26 Counties.
• There is widespread public concern that the introduction of domestic water metering and water charges, and the establishment of Irish Water will eventually lead to the privatisation of water services.
• The massive waste of public money spent on establishing Irish Water, including over €85million on consultants, €539million to date on installing water meters, over €5million in legal fees, and millions more in administration.
This Ard Fheis commends:
• The Right2Water campaign and people across Ireland for their ongoing public opposition to the introduction of water charges.
• The publication by the party’s Leinster House team of legislation to repeal water charges and of a Bill (the 34th Amendment to the Constitution Bill, 2014) to allow for a referendum to amend Article 40 of Bunreacht na hÉireann in order to ensure the right of the people to water by retaining public ownership of water services and infrastructure.
• The decision of the Six-County Executive to stop water meters being retro-fitted in houses.
• The nomination of Dublin MEP Lynn Boylan as author of the ‘European Citizens’ Initiative Right to Water’ report.
This Ard Fheis calls for:
• The immediate repeal of water charges legislation.
• The holding of a Constitutional referendum to keep water services in public ownership.
• The dismantling of Irish Water and its replacement by a new model of governance, funding and delivery within full public ownership and democratic control and accountability.
Cork Comhairle Ceantair
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin
Robert Emmet Cumann, Tipperary
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin
Michael J Marren Cumann, Sligo
Hogan/Riain/Loinsigh Cumann, Limerick
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin
West Waterford Cumann, Waterford
Cumann na Máighe, Donegal
Markievicz/Ryan Cumann, Dublin
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
O’Malley/McEvilly Cumann, Mayo
East Clare Cumann, Clare
Peadar Clancy/Mairéad Farrell Cumann, Clare
Hughes and O’Reilly Cumann, Cork
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 2

This Ard Fheis sends solidarity greetings to the Detroit Water Brigade in their battle to end water shut-offs to homes in Detroit.
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 3

This Ard Fheis proposes that public water pumps should not be shut off by Irish Water as they are a traditional source of water and should be protected as a part of our heritage.
Kevin Coen/Martin Savage Cumann, Sligo

Passed

Motion 4

This Ard Fheis restates its firm opposition to the austerity programmes of the Tory Government in Britain as implemented in the North of Ireland by way of cuts to the block grant and welfare cuts, and to the Fine Gael/Labour Government austerity agenda in the South.
This Ard Fheis commends the Sinn Féin 2015 pre-Budget submission entitled “Repair, Renew, Rebuild” for the 26 Counties. The document sets out to repair communities, rebuild the economy and renew society. The Budget submission lays out how Sinn Féin would abolish the local property tax and water charges and our programme for investing in disability services, health and education. It is anti-austerity, protects the most vulnerable and would create jobs. Proposals include:
• Putting money back into the pockets of ordinary workers through the abolition of the Property Tax and by stopping water charges.
• Investing an additional €202.6million in disability services and supports.
• Prioritising investment in health and education to make back-to-school more affordable and recruit an additional 1,000 nurses and midwives.
• Help stop forced emigration of our young people and restore equality by restoring the Jobseeker payment for those under 26 over two years.
• Begin a social housing programme that is fit for purpose thereby creating thousands of jobs.
• Reducing salaries and allowances of high-earners in the public sector and Oireachtas.

This Ard Fheis also welcomes the election of SYRIZA in Greece on a platform of breaking austerity with a programme of economic growth, equality and hope.  This Ard Fheis commends the continued application of these themes and policies within our own election manifestos.

Ard Chomhairle

Motion 5

This Ard Fheis opposes the cuts in funding to Women’s Networks and other community services for women across the state, acknowledges and commends the valuable services provided by this sector to women (particularly those who may be isolated or vulnerable due to family or other circumstances) and calls on the Government to ensure that an adequate level of funding is maintained to allow these services to continue.
Midlands/North-West Cúige

Passed

Motion 6

This Ard Fheis reaffirms its opposition to austerity and social welfare cuts, both North and South, and is committed to:
- Changing the way Budgets are finalised by governments to ensure that the full impact of social welfare, service and tax proposals, including indirect taxes, properly inform decision making so that every Budget actively seeks to narrow the gap in incomes in society.
- Tackling the inadequacy of social welfare rates of payment to protect against poverty.
- Radically transforming the social protection system into one that acts with a progressively reformed taxation system to achieve a more economically equal society and to preserve justifiable living standards over one’s lifetime, including periods of disability, caring, homemaking, unemployment and retirement.
Ard Chomhairle
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 7

This Ard Fheis condemns the practice of the Department of Social Protection in the cutting of social welfare payments for individuals unilaterally and without warning or explanation.

Cumann na Máighe, Dún na nGall

Passed

Motion 8

This Ard Fheis:
• Opposes the tax changes announced by this Fine Gael/Labour Government in Budget 2015 which mean the One-Parent Family Tax Credit will now only be available to the primary carer of a child and not both parents who share custody.
This Ard Fheis recognises:
• The good work done by our team in Leinster House in opposing and raising awareness of this change.
• That this change has created a hierarchy of parenting.
• That this is for many unmarried, separated or divorced parents the biggest single austerity measure that they have faced throughout the past six years.
• That those who had previously availed of the credit and have been hit by the changes may find it more difficult to keep up with agreed maintenance payments.
Calls on:
• Sinn Féin to bring forward proposals to ensure that all parents who actively care for their children can avail of this credit and not just the primary carer.
Meaney/Dunne Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 9

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government and the Northern Assembly to establish a repatriation fund for Irish people who have died or been killed abroad, and whose family have no access to funds to alleviate financial concerns at a very distressful time.
Newry Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 10

This Ard Fheis expresses total opposition to the Westminster-imposed HGV Road User Levy currently being enforced by the Department of Environment in the North. This acts as a barrier to trade and commerce within the island of Ireland and ignores the particular circumstances of hauliers and the needs of businesses, both North and South.
Further to this, this Ard Fheis calls on both administrations on the island, both Irish Government and Northern Executive, under the aegis of the North/South Ministerial Council, to undertake a study aimed at building up the evidence base with regard to the negative impact that the introduction and enforcement of this levy is having on the all-Ireland economy.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Six-County Cúige

Motion 11

This Ard Fheis:
• Deplores the failure of the Irish Government to apply for a retrospective recapitalisation of the pillar banks and calls on the Government to do so, making a full and robust argument why the Irish people should recoup the monies pumped into these banks.
• Rejects out of hand any payments to junior bondholders as part of the liquidation process at IBRC.
• Condemns the aggressive and unreasonable approach the banks have taken with families struggling with mortgage arrears and the Government and Central Bank facilitation of this unacceptable approach.
• Believes, seven years after the banking collapse, that the Government has failed to rebuild a functioning banking system. The effects of this failure are seen in exorbitant interest rates being charged by Irish banks.
• Supports a vision of an Irish banking sector that is competitive and sustainable with a state bank playing a key role.
• Believes the role of local and public banks such as the Sparkassen model in Germany needs to be examined, including looking at how these banks could be funded.
• Believes in strong regulation of the banking sector to prevent abuses and irresponsible behaviour, including excessive salaries, bonuses and remuneration.
• Calls for greater powers for the Financial Services Ombudsman to protect the rights of consumers when dealing with financial institutions.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Volunteer Diarmuid O’Neill Cumann, Cork
Midlands/North-West Cúige

Passed

Motion 12

This Ard Fheis reasserts its support for the credit union movement and its social ethos.
• We express our disappointment at the inflexible approach taken by the regulator and Central Bank on some regulatory issues which fails to take into account the unique social and community ethos of the Credit Union movement.
• Pledges to work with the Credit Union Movement to ensure its unique role in Irish society is not undermined.
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 13

This Ard Fheis proposes that the bankruptcy legislation should be harmonised North and South.
Buncrana Cumann, Donegal

Passed

Motion 14

This Ard Fheis welcomes the commitment made to devolve Corporation Tax varying powers to the Assembly in the Six Counties. We acknowledge that the devolution of Corporation Tax varying powers is only one step towards the comprehensive devolution of economic power from Britain to the North. We call on the incoming Ard Chomhairle to carefully consider any variation in tax rates to ensure that increased tax revenue advantages the local economy ordinary citizens benefit through the creation of sustainable, well-paying jobs and economic growth.
Seán McCartney Cumann, Belfast
Mairéad Farrell Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 15

This Ard Fheis, while supporting the principle of devolution of the power to set corporation tax rates to the Six County Assembly, recognizes that the role of a democratic socialist party should be to argue for more effective implementation of current rates of corporation tax, north and south, and rejects a reduction in corporation tax which would increase the profits of global corporations.
Clancy/O’Callaghan Cumann, Limerick

Failed

Motion 16

This Ard Fheis notes that the policy Carbon Tax increases has led to an increase in fuel poverty. We therefore call on the Irish Government to restore three weeks fuel allowance as a means of protecting the most vulnerable for these unfair tax increases.
Mulvoy/Campbell Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 17

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government and EU to exempt the volunteer rescue services from having to pay VAT on their rescue equipment which they need in order to maintain the high standard of emergency work that they carry out.
Bobby Sands Cumann, Kerry
Hurson/Quirke Cumann, Galway

Passed

A Republic For All

Motion 18

In the context of the present ‘Decade of Centenaries’, this Ard Fheis agrees that Sinn Féin should work with others to progress an initiative which aims to achieve by Easter 2016 a national joint statement by leaders of political parties, churches and religious groupings, business and trade unions, cultural, community and voluntary organisations which sets out a shared commitment to mutual respect and tolerance whereby centenary commemorative events are organised to be inclusive for all sections of our people while at the same time recognising the right of every side to respectively engage in their own commemorations on the basis of dignity, respect and without offence.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 19

This Ard Fheis calls for the use of the words of the 1916 Proclamation, coming into the centenary period, as a means of capturing ‘The Spirit of 1916’ and to feature where possible on printed material, including election material, to support the struggle for ‘An Ireland of Equals’.
This Ard Fheis also recognises the interest worldwide in commemorating the 1916 Rising amongst the Irish Diaspora and encourages events to be held overseas in 2016 as well as in Ireland.
This Ard Fheis calls for legacy projects to be carried out that remember the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising in a meaningful and educative manner and calls on the party’s elected members to make representations to their respective elected bodies with proposals for such, including the naming or renaming of buildings, parks and other such amenities after the patriots of 1916.
Primary among these is the preservation of the historic battlefield site at Moore Street. This Ard Fheis pledges Sinn Féin to do all it can to preserve and develop the site into a fitting memorial alongside the 1916 relatives and other likeminded campaigners.
Ard Chomhairle
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 20

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to supply adequate funding to city and county council Heritage Offices for the 1916 Centenary Commemorations.
Mulvoy/Campbell Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 21

This Ard Fheis recognises the importance of the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising to Irish republicans and proposes that no member of either the British royal family or the British Government be invited to any official state ceremonial event as this would be an insult to the memory of the fallen heroes of the 1916 and their families.
Keating/Sands Cumann, Waterford

Passed

Motion 22

This Ard Fheis recognises:
• The sovereign right of the Irish People to National Self-determination and independence
• The legacy of partition has been conflict, division and inequality
• Partition continues to impede economic growth and undermine public services and reconciliation

• That Irish Unity is viable, achievable and in the best interests of all.
• That a peaceful and democratic pathway to Irish unity now exists.
The Ard Fheis commits to
• Promote dialogue to highlight the economic, social and democratic case for Irish Unity.
• Build cross border and all-Ireland working at the Dáil, Assembly, Europe and Councils
• Continue the process of national reconciliation
• Campaign for a Border Poll as provided for in the Good Friday Agreement
• Make good the promise of Proclamation to deliver a Republic for all our Citizens.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 23

This Ard Fheis believes:
• Partition is unjust, uneconomic and inefficient.
• The Good Friday Agreement was endorsed by the vast majority of people in Ireland, North and South, provides the ground rules for peaceful and democratic constitutional change through concurrent Border polls North and South.
• Almost 17 years on from the Good Friday Agreement, it is time for the people North and South to exercise their democratic right to vote on Irish reunification and commends those in Queen’s University Belfast for their recent referendum initiative.
• A united, equal and inclusive Ireland is in the best interests of all our people, our economy and the process of reconciliation.
This Ard Fheis reaffirms:
• Our ability and commitment to achieve a united Ireland on the basis of peaceful, political and democratic strategies.
• The importance of continued discussion and engagement with all those who oppose the Peace Process and Irish reunification.
This Ard Fheis calls for:
• The Irish and British governments to ensure that all the citizens of Ireland can exercise their democratic power to carve out a new future in a united Ireland by calling concurrent Border polls in the lifetime of the next Assembly and Dáil term.
• A full, open and honest debate on the benefits of Irish unity and the costs of continued partition.
• The Oireachtas to prioritise building a new, united, equal and inclusive Ireland and to develop and publish a Green Paper for Irish Unity.
• Sinn Féin to continue to maximise support for Irish unity through all sections of society and internationally and to intensify the campaign for a united Ireland as the core objective of the party, requiring increased commitment and activism on the issue.
Ard Chomhairle
Seán English Cumann, Offaly
Meaney/Dunne Cumann, Dublin
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Burns/McKerr/Toman Cumann, Armagh

Passed

Motion 24

This Ard Fheis notes that the people of Scotland engaged in an informed and respectful debate in the recent referendum on independence and have made their choice. The turnout in the referendum in Scotland demonstrated the power of engagement and democracy. Their decision shows that the people are sovereign and that change is possible.
The Union is no longer fixed; it is in the ownership of the people. It is now up to the Westminster-based parties to make good on their promises of full fiscal and policy transfer to Scotland.
This Ard Fheis also notes that British Prime Minister David Cameron promised that powers to be transferred to Scotland would also be extended to the Stormont Executive. This promise should be acted upon without further delay.
This Ard Fheis calls for the people of Ireland to be provided the opportunity in a Border poll to determine the constitutional position. That is the democratic way forward.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 25

This Ard Fheis calls for the promotion of the national flag, anthem and the Proclamation of 1916 to be rolled out in schools across the country where there is community support.
McGrath/O’Brien Cumann, Waterford
Ruth Hackett Cumann, Kildare
Barry/Doyle Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 26

Sinn Féin calls on the Department of Transport and Iarnród Éireann to ensure that any train stations named after those involved in the 1916 Rising displays those names prominently, including the name of Roger Casement more prominently at the entrance to Casement Station in Tralee.
John Joe Sheehy Cumann, Kerry

Passed

Building the Peace

Motion 27

This Ard Fheis restates the absolute centrality of implementing all outstanding issues arising from the Good Friday, Weston Park, St Andrews and Hillsborough Castle Agreements.
These include:
• The British Government’s responsibility to hold an inquiry into the killing of Pat Finucane.
• The implementation of Acht na Gaeilge.
• The expansion of the All-Ireland Implementation Bodies and policing agenda.
• Establishment of a Civic Forum and an All-Ireland Consultative Forum.
• The implementation of a Bill of Rights.
We believe that the political process and institutions in the North can only progress with unconditional commitment to power-sharing and partnership government.
Comprehensive agreement on all of these is integral to the existence of sufficient funding to make the North’s economy function.
This requires:
• A viable block grant.
• Fiscal levers to generate revenue and economic stimulus.
The British Government’s austerity policies and welfare cuts agenda are politically regressive and economically destabilising.
The North of Ireland remains a special case. This Ard Fheis endorses the need for a properly-resourced reconstruction, regeneration and reconciliation plan for the North.
Ard Chomhairle
Burns/McKerr/Toman Cumann, Armagh

Passed

Motion 28

This Ard Fheis applauds the efforts of those from within the trade union movement in Ireland and internationally, the local business sector and wider civic society who have attempted to positively support the achievement of a comprehensive agreement during the recent Stormont talks.
Democratic politics in the North has been weakened due to the marginalisation of civic society from the political process.
Sinn Féin reaffirms the necessity for civic society to have a central influence in relation to the peace and political processes. We reiterate our call for the establishment of a Civic Forum and All-Ireland Consultative Forum as important contributions to the enhancement of political inclusion and participation.
Ard Chomhairle
Desmond White Cumann, Cavan

Passed

Motion 29

This Ard Fheis:
• Notes the differential impact that the conflict had on women in Irish society (the ramifications of which are still unresolved, as demonstrated by the high levels of domestic and sexual violence and abuse).
• Expresses disappointment that the important role women have to play in peace building has been too often neglected.
• Recognises that the ‘real’ involvement of women in the development of a peaceful and fruitful future is not only critical but absolutely essential.
• Calls for the immediate implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325.
Six-County Cúige

Passed

Motion 30

This Ard Fheis acknowledges the work done by the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims Remains to recover the remains of those known as “the Disappeared”.
We recognise that while important progress has been made in dealing with this particular tragedy from our past, more needs to be done to bring closure for all the bereaved families.
We reiterate our appeal for any additional information which may help the Independent Commission to fulfil its mandate to be provided to the Commission.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 31

This Ard Fheis affirms that any future process to engage on the legacy of the conflict must be:
• Independent from all conflict actors.
• Victim-centred.
• Cross-jurisdictional.
• Compliant with international human rights principles, frameworks and guidelines.
• Resourced by the British Treasury.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Derry Comhairle Ceantair
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 32

This Ard Fheis is opposed to the establishment of the Legacy Investigations Branch as a replacement for the Historical Enquiries Team.
The Legacy Investigations Branch is an integral part of PSNI Crime Operations and lacks the independence to be Article 2 (European Convention on Human Rights) compliant. It will not be able to gain the public confidence essential to dealing with legacy issues.
Six-County Cúige

Passed

Motion 33

This Ard Fheis registers its concerns about the following:
- Key staff in the PSNI Legacy Support Unit, which filters and redacts all relevant documentation for coroners’ inquests, are former RUC Special Branch officers.
- The PSNI has hosted ‘Legacy Information Evenings’ which are designed to give advice to former or retired RUC officers on matters of anonymity and screening, witness compellability, legal representation at inquests and access to statements, notebooks and interview notes
- Comments by former and current senior PSNI officers at these evening sessions outlining their determination to protect the reputation of the RUC
Accordingly, this Ard Fheis calls for:
- An independent mechanism to manage disclosure of documents held by the PSNI and other state agencies.
- Recognition of the conflict of interest issues pertaining to former members of the RUC Special Branch and their role in filtering documentation for coroners’ inquests.
- All state agencies to release all necessary documentation immediately.
- Retired RUC officers to co-operate fully with inquests and all related legacy processes.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 34

This Ard Fheis notes with serious concern the emergence of an aggressive strategy by the British Government to absolve itself of its human rights obligations. This strategy has been clearly designed to facilitate impunity for state actors and to prevent a wider investigation of their conflict practices and policies.
This Ard Fheis calls on the British Government to:
• Acknowledge their role as a combatant and end their obfuscation and denial of past conflict actions.
• Acknowledge and fulfil their human rights obligations in respect of past conflict actions, policies and practices.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 35

This Ard Fheis recognises the immense suffering and loss of all victims. This Ard Fheis calls on the Stormont Executive to ensure that the Victims and Survivors Service provides a victim-centred package of services tailored to the individual needs of each victim and survivor.
This Ard Fheis also rejects any attempts to change the definition of a victim and hold firms that there should be no deviation from 2006 Victims Order.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 36

This Ard Fheis calls on the Ard Chomhairle to establish an all-island legacy co-ordination group which will:
• Support various campaigning groups and individuals who work on legacy and dealing with the past.
• Develop a work programme that will organise educational events, inform future legal challenges, assist in highlighting legacy matters, and support ongoing awareness of historic abuses.
• Support and provide direction to organisational structures in each cúige area.
• Positively articulate and uphold the republican narrative regarding the causes and consequences of the conflict.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 37

This Ard Fheis:
• Extends solidarity and support to the 14 citizens known as ‘The Hooded Men’ who were arrested and brutally tortured by the British Army following the introduction of internment in August 1971.
• Commends the courage and dedication of these men in their campaign for justice and for successfully securing agreement from the Irish Government that they will now request the European Court of Human Rights to revise its judgment in the case of ‘The Hooded Men’.
• Calls on the Irish Government to ensure that it prepares the most thorough, exhaustive, well-argued case that it can in support of the 14 men and of the Government’s challenge before the European Court of Human Rights.
Ard Chomhairle
Watters Brothers Cumann, Louth

Passed

Motion 38

This Ard Fheis notes the serious delays being placed on the inquests of victims of collusion (including that of Gerard Casey murdered in Rasharkin) due to the failure of the British Government and Department of Justice to properly resource investigations.
This Ard Fheis calls on Justice Minister David Ford to take steps immediately to ensure that these inquests are prioritised in the interest of the victims and their families.
Gerard Casey Cumann, Antrim

Passed

Motion 39

This Ard Fheis sends its solidarity to the Carberry family in their ongoing battle for the truth in the state execution of their father, Stan Snr.
Beechmount Cumann

Passed

Motion 40

This Ard Fheis believes that the political process in the North has been undermined by heightened sectarianism, polarisation and increased racism.
In the absence of serious political engagement, wider society needs to urgently explore what more can be done to break this division and create trust.
A positive, critical mass supporting reconciliation needs to be mobilised in Irish society.
There is no hierarchy of humanity. Acknowledgement of all suffering without recrimination is an important gesture.
In the absence of political agreement in dealing with the past this will require huge grace and generosity.
Political difference should not be contested on the hurt or suffering inflicted by and upon all sides.
This Ard Fheis agrees that collective expressions of remorse and regret for death and injury during the conflict would assist in a healing process and fostering mutual understanding and respect.
Ard Chomhairle
Derry City Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 41

All citizens have a right to live free from all forms of sectarian harassment, bigotry and intolerance.
For as long as the attitudes and agents of sectarianism remain unchallenged, division and polarisation will be perpetuated, intolerance and bigotry will continue, and, the potential for instability and conflict will be a constant.
This Ard Fheis calls for full implementation of the Northern Executive’s ‘Together Building a United Community’ strategy to be supported with the entrenchment of a legal definition of sectarianism within anti-sectarian legislation. This should include robust incitement to hatred provisions. These new legislative instruments should be guaranteed the full support of the criminal justice system.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 42

This Ard Fheis calls on the Northern Executive and Assembly to:
• Adopt a dedicated anti-sectarianism policy by the Assembly, local authorities and all public sector bodies in the North.
• Devise strategies with trade unions and employees in the private sector to promote policies and initiatives to challenge sectarian behaviour and discrimination in the workplace and make employees aware of relevant legislation.
• Encourage every successful bidder for government contracts and public funding in the private, community and voluntary sectors to adopt an anti-sectarian policy within management policy, and include sectarian awareness training for staff and volunteers.
• Ensure sectarian awareness training is provided for all government staff, all law enforcement officers, within schools, and youth diversionary projects in the North.
• Implement publicity campaign across the Six Counties to raise awareness of the damage caused by sectarianism highlighting the consequences of bigoted attitudes and behaviour.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 43

This Ard Fheis restates the need for direct face-to-face, sustained and meaningful dialogue between those who seek to parade and those who live, work and trade in areas through which they seek to parade.
We reaffirm our support for the Parades Commission in its endeavours to resolve outstanding disputes.
We reiterate the need for an urgent review of current parading legislation to identify gaps and weaknesses in common law as a precursor to the drafting of robust legislation which ensures enforceability in law in relation to breaches of Parades Commission determinations.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Party Development

Motion 44

This Ard Fheis welcomes the recent plans for increasing the party membership and the number of cumainn, to improve skills training and political education delivery, and to achieve a 50/50 gender balance in party membership by 2020.
This Ard Fheis calls on all members of the party to do their part in achieving these goals in order to help deliver on our goals of Irish unity and equality for all.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 45

This Ard Fheis commends the work of the Sinn Féin LGBTI group over the past year and encourages Sinn Féin members to get involved with the group and get active on LGBTI issues within their local areas.
This Ard Fheis also commits to further mainstreaming LGBTI issues within the party structures over the coming year.
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin
Bob Smith Cumann, Dublin
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin
Sheena Campbell Cumann, Down

Passed

Motion 46

This Ard Fheis recognises that society forces individuals to adopt a manner of social expression based on sex which many individuals feel is inconsistent with their gender identity. This Ard Fheis calls for a more gender-inclusive process in all cases where Sinn Féin inquire as to the gender of incoming or current members. This Ard Fheis therefore calls for a third gender option of “other” to be included in all Sinn Féin forms.
Devlin/Plunkett Cumann, Dublin
Dublin Cúige

Passed

Motion 47

This Ard Fheis recognises the importance of mental health not just across broader society but also amongst its members, staff, officers and public representatives so much so that that this party commits to the provision of mental health supports within the organisation.
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin
Bob Smith Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 48

This Ard Fheis calls for the development of cross-Border twinning between cumainn to promote mutual support, understanding and political development.
Meaney/Dunne Cumann, Dublin
Hughes and O’Reilly Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 49

This Ard Fheis proposes that the lines of communication between cumainn and the party nationally be improved to facilitate individuals and cumainn when they require instant and updated information in dealing with media and political opponents’ propaganda and attacks on us.
This Ard Fheis also seeks to improve communications among and between the party membership, leadership and the general public. Upgrading the website contact details would facilitate easier access for members and those seeking Sinn Féin information. An improved website is a vital tool for encouraging prospective members to join and for current members to be more active. Other communications improvements could be built into a public relations strategy that includes ‘one voice’ messaging during critical political campaigns and responses to crises.
Michael J Marren Cumann, Sligo
Tom Shevlin/Joe McDonnell Cumann, Roscommon

Passed

Motion 50

This Ard Fheis calls for the party to review and update its policies on bullying in line with best practice and for training to be provided to tackle this issue.
Hughes and O’Reilly Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 51

Recognising the leadership being offered by all existing local authority Sinn Féin group leaders, this Ard Fheis proposes that the methodology of appointment of local authority Sinn Féin group leaders be reviewed with a view to enhancing the appointments’ transparency.
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 52

This Ard Fheis notes that:
• The political landscape in Ireland and across Europe is changing.
• There is the potential to break the monopoly on government in the 26 Counties which has been held by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil since the foundation of the state.
• Sinn Féin is now the biggest party on the island and is seeking a mandate to deliver a fair recovery, to safeguard public services, to deliver a republic for all and a united Ireland.
• Sinn Féin will not go into a Fianna Fáil-led or Fine Gael-led government following the general election.
This Ard Fheis commits Sinn Féin to form broad alliances with like-minded parties and independents to ensure that austerity is opposed North and South, that there is a fair recovery, and to maximise the potential for an anti-austerity government in the 26 Counties.
Dublin Republican Youth
Carndonagh/Malin Cumann, Donegal
Tom Shevlin/Joe McDonnell Cumann, Roscommon
Keating/Sands Cumann, Waterford
Burns/McKerr/Toman Cumann, Armagh
Carroll/Ashe Cumann, Dublin
Shortis/Scanlon Cumann, Kerry
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin
Keenan/Doherty Cumann, Monaghan
Volunteer Diarmuid O’Neill Cumann, Cork
East Clare Cumann, Clare
Markievicz/O’Farrell Cumann, Dublin
Markievicz/Ryan Cumann, Dublin
Bobby Sands Cumann, Kerry
Barry/Doyle Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 53

This Ard Fheis calls for progressive, pro-Agreement parties in the Six Counties to agree, alongside Sinn Féin, an electoral pact to maximise the number of progressive and pro-Agreement candidates returned in the coming Westminster elections.
Cúige na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 54

This Ard Fheis has no confidence in the current Fine Gael/Labour Government and recognises this Government has lost its mandate and is limping from crisis to crisis. The Government has mishandled:
• The setting up of Irish Water and the introduction of water charges which should be scrapped.
• The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) and penalty point controversies which led to the resignation of the Minister for Justice, the former Garda Commissioner and the Secretary General at the Department of Justice.
• Allegations of cronyism in the allocation of primary health care centres by the previous Minister for Health.
• The removal of discretionary Medical Cards.
• The botched Seanad referendum.
• The recent Seanad by-election.
They have clearly demonstrated that they are a Government in crisis, a Government that does not have the confidence of the people. What is necessary is an immediate general election to elect a Government capable of governing in the interests of citizens.
Waterford Comhairle Ceantair
Bobby Sands Cumann, Kerry

Passed

Motion 55

This Ard Fheis welcomes the enormous growth in support for the party, particularly in the 26 Counties, over the past year.
Acknowledges the many challenges we face as we draw up our election manifesto and prepare for the real possibility of leading the first-ever Left government in the history of the 26-County state.
Call for the reinstatement of the three-day Ard Fheis from 2016 to allow more time for discussing and debating the many important decisions we will be committing the party to.
McLaughlin/Cahill Cumann, Dublin

Referred

Motion 56

This Ard Fheis welcomes the success of recent internal conferences for members, activists and elected representatives in encouraging open political discussion and discussing the party’s political strategy, but notes that many of these events are being held in hotels or other businesses.
This Ard Fheis urges the organisers of party conferences, events and conventions to try to use community facilities for these events whenever possible and available, helping to ensure our events financially support critical community infrastructure.
Emmet/Clarke Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 57

This Ard Fheis calls on all Sinn Féin members and elected representatives to attend the annual Wolfe Tone Commemoration in Bodenstown, and that other areas not organise events that may clash with the Féile Wolfe Tone which takes place on June 20th and 21st this year.
This Ard Fheis also agrees that representatives of the cumann in the host area will be involved in the ceremony at Wolfe Tone’s grave at the Wolfe Tone Commemoration.
Wolfe Tone Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 58

This Ard Fheis proposes that our national flag should be shown due respect and not be thrown around by the party’s elected representatives and their supporters.
Piarais McCan Cumann, Tipperary

Passed

Motion 59

This Ard Fheis continues the Sinn Féin policy of bilingualism for publications, where possible. Sinn Féin undertakes to increase its output in Gaeilge and believes that the question of output in Gaeilge would best be taken forward by an incremental approach involving engagement between An tOifigeach Náisiúnta Gaeilge and party leadership, structures and members.
This Ard Fheis recognises the need to take effective steps to Gaelicise Sinn Féin. We believe that this will be enabled by the production of a discussion paper to raise internal awareness and to encourage widespread support for this aim.
This Ard Fheis agrees that, on the back of this discussion paper, a draft five-year Gaelicisation development strategy within Sinn Féin should be prepared by An tOifigeach Náisiúnta Gaeilge and that this should be presented for adoption as policy to the 2016 Ard Fheis.
In the meantime, we encourage all Sinn Féin representatives and those working in a paid capacity for the party to attend Irish language classes if they are not fluent in the language.
Ard Chomhairle

Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin
Mulvoy/Campbell Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 60

That this Ard Fheis recognises best practice whereby cumainn operate bilingually. We request that all party structures support this endeavour and encourage other cumainn to follow suit.
Wolfe Tone Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Constitution and Rules

Motion 61

Amendment to section 6.2.1.b of the Sinn Féin Constitution and 3.2.b of the Rules as follows:
Each Comhairle Cúige shall elect three four representatives to An Ard Chomhairle.
An Annual General Meeting shall take place at least a fortnight prior to An Ard Fheis. The outgoing officers and three Ard Chomhairle representatives and two delegates from each cumann and Comhairlí Ceantair shall attend and elect an officer board and three four Comhairle Cúige representatives to An Ard Chomhairle. The Annual General Meeting shall formulate policy for the ensuing year. At least one of the three representatives should be a woman and at least one should be a man. Two of the four representatives shall be women and two shall be men.
Smith/Farrell/Griffith Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 62

Amendment to 5.4a of the Sinn Féin Constitution
5.4 Affiliation fee and funds
 a.     The financial year of Sinn Féin shall be the calendar year ending December 31st. A cumann affiliation fee of €95 must be paid during the month of January with a deadline of January 31st of each year. Cumainn based in third-level institutions shall be exempt from this fee.
Martin Hurson Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 63

Addition to section 6.2.5g of the Sinn Féin constitution outlining the powers of an Ard Chomhairle
ix. To enact and enforce party rules and procedures that shall be binding on all party structures and members, including but not limited to, election procedures, disciplinary procedures, membership procedures and the party Code of Conduct.
Ard Chomhairle

Failed

Motion 64

This Motion Was Withdrawn

Delete the following sections of the Party Rules
2. AN ARD CHOMHAIRLE
2.1 Disciplinary powers in relation to members of the organisation
a.     An Ard Chomhairle shall have the power to dismiss or suspend from the organisation or from office any subordinate body or member for incompetence, negligence or general unsuitability.
b.     Upon notice of dismissal, the member or body shall have the right to appeal to An Ard Chomhairle which may set up an inquiry team to examine the case.
c. In the event of an Ard Chomhairle inquiry, the member or body concerned must receive from Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí, in writing, a signed copy of the complaint and due notice of the time and terms of reference of the inquiry team.
d. The suspension of a member or body for any unspecified period shall lapse after six months unless it is renewed
e. On completion of the inquiry, Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí shall submit a report to An Ard Chomhairle.
f. Having considered the report’s findings, An Ard Chomhairle shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss the member or body from the organisation.
g. Where allegations of sexual harassment or sexual assault are made against any member of the organisation, they should be referred directly to Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí and An tArd-Rúnaí.

2.2 Disciplinary powers in relation to Ard Chomhairle members
a.     Members of An Ard Chomhairle absent from three consecutive meetings without an excusing cause automatically forfeit membership of An Ard Chomhairle.
b.     An Ard Chomhairle shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss or suspend any Ard Chomhairle member before a duly convened meeting called for that purpose.
c.     Upon notice of dismissal, the member shall have the right to appeal to An Ard Chomhairle which shall set up an inquiry team to examine the case.
d.     In the event of An Ard Chomhairle inquiry, the member concerned must receive from Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí, in writing, a signed copy of the complaint and due notice of the time and terms of reference of the inquiry.
e.     On completion of the inquiry, Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí shall submit a report to An Ard Chomhairle.
f.     Having considered the report’s findings, An Ard Chomhairle shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss the member from An Ard Chomhairle or, if it deems it justifiable, from the organisation.
g.     Where a member is dismissed, An Ard Chomhairle shall have the power to co-opt a substitute.
h.     The suspension of an Ard Chomhairle member for any unspecified period shall lapse after six months unless it is renewed.

3. COMHAIRLE CÚIGE
3.5     Cúige disciplinary procedures
a.     An Chomhairle Cúige shall have the power to dismiss or suspend from the organisation or from office any subordinate body or member thereof for incompetence, negligence or general unsuitability.
b.     Under direction from Cathaoirleach an Pháirtí, and subject to future ratification by An Chomhairle Cúige and where there is an urgent and immediate need for executive action to be taken, the officer board of An Chomhairle Cúige shall have the power to dismiss or suspend from the organisation or office any subordinate body or member thereof for incompetence, negligence or unsuitability. This shall not affect the right to appeal of the member or body.
c.     Before being dismissed, however, the member or body must be given an opportunity to appeal to an independent inquiry team appointed by An Chomhairle Cúige.
d.     The member or body concerned must receive from the Cúige Cathaoirleach, in writing, a signed copy of the complaint and due notice of the time and terms of reference of the inquiry team
e.     On completion of the inquiry, the inquiry team shall submit a report to An Chomhairle Cúige. Having considered the report’s findings, An Comhairle Cúige shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss the member or body from the organisation.
f.     Any member or body that has been dismissed from the organisation by a decision of An Chomhairle Cúige has the right of appeal to An Ard Chomhairle.
g.     The suspension of a body or member thereof for any unspecified period shall lapse after six months unless it is renewed
h.     Differences arising in a Comhairle Cúige or between Comhairlí Cúige where the bodies concerned are unable to settle shall be referred to An Ard Chomhairle.

4. COMHAIRLÍ CEANTAIR
4.5     Comhairle Ceantair disciplinary procedures
a.     An Chomhairle Ceantair shall have the power to dismiss or suspend from the organisation or from office any subordinate body or member thereof for incompetence, negligence or general unsuitability.
b.     Before being dismissed, however, the member or body must be given an opportunity to appeal to an independent inquiry team appointed by An Chomhairle Ceantair.
c.     The member or body concerned must receive from An Chomhairle Ceantair Cathaoirleach, in writing, a signed copy of the complaint and due notice of the time and terms of reference of the inquiry team
d.     On completion of the inquiry, the inquiry team shall submit a report to An Chomhairle Ceantair. Having considered the report’s findings, An Chomhairle Ceantair shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss the member or body from the organisation.
e.     Any member or body that has been dismissed from the organisation by a decision of An Chomhairle Ceantair has the right of appeal to An Chomhairle Cúige.
f.     The suspension of a body or member thereof for any unspecified period shall lapse after six months unless it is renewed
g.     Differences arising in a Comhairle Ceantair or between Comhairlí Ceantair where the bodies concerned are unable to settle shall be referred to An Chomhairle Cúige.

5. CUMAINN
5.6     Cumann disciplinary procedures
a.     The Cumann shall have the power to dismiss or suspend from the organisation or from office any of its members for incompetence, negligence or general unsuitability.
b.     Before being dismissed, however, the member must be given an opportunity to appeal to an independent inquiry team appointed by the Cumann.
c.     The member concerned must receive from the Cumann Cathaoirleach, in writing, a signed copy of the complaint and due notice of the time and terms of reference of the inquiry team
d.     On completion of the inquiry, the inquiry team shall submit a report to the Cumann. Having considered the report’s findings, the Cumann shall have the power, by a two-thirds majority, to dismiss the member from the organisation.
e.     Any member who has been dismissed from the organisation by a decision of a Cumann has the right of appeal to An Chomhairle Ceantair.
f.     The suspension of a member for any unspecified period shall lapse after six months unless it is renewed.
g.     Differences arising in a Cumann or between Cumainn where the bodies concerned are unable to settle shall be referred to An Chomhairle Ceantair and, if necessary, from there to An Chomhairle Cúige, subject to the right of appeal to An Ard Chomhairle.
h.     Any member of a Cumann holding that any particular decision of a Cumann is contrary to the principles, objectives or policy of the organisation may require a statement of such a decision, signed by the Cathaoirleach, Rúnaí and objector to be sent for consideration to An Chomhairle Ceantair and, if necessary, An Chomhairle Cúige, subject to the right of appeal to An Ard Chomhairle.

Motion 65

Amendment to 5.1b of the Sinn Féin Rules
5.1b. Its officers should consist of a Cathaoirleach (ex-officio member of all committees), Leas-Chathaoireach, Rúnaí, two Cisteoirí, Oifigeach Comhionannais (Equality Officer), Oifigeach na Gaeilge and an Oifigeach Caidrimh Phoiblí, and shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting held on written notice at least a month prior to An Ard Fheis.
Lawlor/Mulvihill/Clashmealcon Martyrs Cumann, Kerry

Investing in Transport

Motion 66

This Ard Fheis recognises that:
• There is great potential for the development of Greenways in urban and rural areas using track beds in particular.
• Railways were used in the past as a means of connecting people in remote areas and the Greenway Network would serve to bring this system of connections back into use.
• The Greenway Network has economic implications. A 43km Greenway built on the track bed of the Great Western Railway in Co Mayo attracts c200,000 cyclists per annum and injects €7.2million into the local economy.
• Providing an extensive network of safe places to cycle would encourage more cycling and more numbers to take up cycling which is a healthy activity.
• From an engineering perspective, the foundations of the Greenway Network would be already in place and, apart from securing the agreement of local landowners, their use should be a relatively cost-effective means of creating an extensive cycling network across the 32 Counties.
This Ard Fheis calls on the Department of Regional Development in the Six Counties and the Department of Environment, Local Communities & Local Government in the 26 Counties to work in partnership to conduct a feasibility study to scope the potential of creating a network of Greenways across Ireland through the utilisation of track beds from disused railways, canal tow paths and other suitable structures such as the Great Northern Railway line.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Gerard Casey Cumann, Antrim

Passed

Motion 67

This Ard Fheis welcomes the increase in the number of people cycling and calls for further investment to be made in cycling infrastructure to make it a safer transport option; calls for greater funding to be allocated to the Department for Regional Development Cycling Unit and for that unit to start to implement significant changes to the infrastructure in the North as a matter of urgency.
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair
Beechmount Cumann

Passed

Motion 68

This Ard Fheis recognises the importance of regional road and rail infrastructure connecting our major cities both to ensure people have access to work and to trade and also the importance it can have to ensuring that people can live healthy lives.
In light of this recognition, calls for the development of the A5 and A6 roadworks to ensure that the people of the north-west have greater access to on both the eastern and western sides of our island.
In particular, recognising that Dungiven sits on the main arterial route between the City of Derry and Belfast, the Dungiven section of the A6 scheme should be advanced without delay, with all lines of potential funding to be explored, in particular the EIB.
Further calls on the Irish Government to commit the necessary funding, as the Northern Executive has done, to ensuring that the A5 road network linking the north-west to Dublin is fully completed.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Irish Government to fully commit to its part in the building of the Narrow Water Bridge.
Cúige na 6 Chontae
Billy Reid Cumann, Tyrone
Sheena Campbell Cumann, Down

Passed

Motion 69

This Ard Fheis notes with real concern the rise in the number of road fatalities this past 12 months and calls for an all-Ireland approach and co-operation between both jurisdictions to reduce fatalities and serious injuries on our roads.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 70

This Ard Fheis calls on the Fine Gael/Labour Minister for Health to allow free medical examination for all OAPs applying to renew their driving licence.
Logue/Marley Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 71

This Ard Fheis calls on the Fine Gael/Labour Minister for Health to make transport available to all intellectually/physically disabled citizens attending day services.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Minister for Transport to work towards a situation where all school buses to be wheelchair accessible.
Logue/Marley Cumann, Dublin
Delivering a Fair Recovery - Getting Ireland Back to Work

Passed

Motion 72

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises Sinn Féin’s commitment to job creation and retention and existing policy strategies to increase employment and develop a unified, prosperous, sustainable and socially-just economy.
• Commits to build on existing jobs policies with a renewed job creation strategy that will focus on the Economics of Growth focussing on strategic stimulus investment, opening up public procurement to indigenous SMEs and microbusinesses, securing and developing Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) that supports the growth of indigenous enterprises, develop an ambitious ecommerce strategy, and address the barriers to the growth of balanced regional enterprise development.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Thomas Ashe Cumann, Ashbourne

Passed

Motion 73

This Ard Fheis recognises that:
• The economies of both the North and South of Ireland are interlinked and interdependent but they are not aligned.
• There are no advantages for an island nation of 6.4million people on the edge of Europe having separate tax regimes, regulatory and legal systems, disparate economic development agencies and programmes, divergent and competing investment strategies and economic policies.
• The Northern economy is peripheral to both the British economy and the political machinations of Westminster.
• The debate on EU membership, the British HGV levy, and the current welfare cuts agenda represent but a few examples of British policy development that has ignored the needs of the people of the North and the island.
This Ard Fheis believes:
• The economy will grow significantly when the costs of partition are removed and the full potential of an integrated island economy is unleashed.
• A united Ireland government would have the full authority and flexibility to put in place the optimal choice of macroeconomic policies to ensure stability and to choose the best options for funding infrastructure projects across Ireland.
• Realising the vision of a united Ireland economy requires the full and active participation of the Irish Government, the Northern Executive and Assembly.
• The absence of fiscal powers in the North prevents the Executive developing an indigenous fiscal regime that would bring about the required economic change and assist the development of a single island economy.
This Ard Fheis calls for:
• The full devolution of fiscal powers to the Executive and Assembly.
• A commitment from the British and Irish governments and the Northern Executive to produce a plan and timescale for a fully integrated island economy.
• A commitment from the Irish Government and Northern Executive for a plan and timescale for the delivery of integrated public services across the island.
• Departments in both jurisdictions to identify shared projects from planning stage to completion with emphasis on identifying the benefits of shared understanding and ownership, including scope, delivery, targets and expected outcomes.
• A ‘Border Economic Development Zone’ to zone to harmonise trade and maximise returns for Border businesses.
• The upgrading of island-wide infrastructure, including completing the A5, Narrow Water Bridge and developing an island-wide rail network.
Ard Chomhairle
Burns/McKerr/Toman Cumann, Armagh

Passed

Motion 74

Recognising that Sinn Féin is committed to championing the voice and rights of Ireland’s young people through its analysis of critical youth issues and Youth Guarantee document, ‘Youth Matters: Not For Export’, this Ard Fheis:
• Calls for continued commitment at all levels, from community and local, to state-wide and European, in order to seriously address the youth unemployment crisis and the social exclusion that results from it.
• Recognises that the youth jobs crisis is not limited to a lack of jobs for young people but also a crisis regarding the type of employment available; that precarious work, fixed-term and zero-hour contracts create instability in young people’s lives, make young workers vulnerable to exploitation and provide no job security or future prospects.
• Also recognises that young people are entitled to respectful payment for work done rather than free labour, as has been the case in most JobBridge and Gateway work placements which have been largely ineffective in upskilling or providing any long-term work opportunities and that these anti-youth policies should be replaced with positive and progressive work schemes.
• Agrees that forcing unemployed labour to leave the state through the implementation of policies which penalise young people through drastic cuts on dole payment when no jobs are available, and the ever-increasing college and apprenticeship fees, amounts to little more than forced emigration.
• Emphasises that the Irish Youth Guarantee Implementation Plan – which is meant to guarantee a job, apprenticeship, or training offer to for all young people under 25 – must not become a revolving door system of young people leaving ill-suited placements only to return to the Live Register and be placed again on another short-lived placement.
• Calls on the Irish Government to create provision within the Youth Guarantee Implementation Plan for young people with a disability, young lone parents or carers, and young people who are not engaged in the employment services.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Billy Reid Cumann, Omagh
Midlands/North-West Cúige

Passed

Motion 75

Acknowledging that:
• Public procurement constitutes a spend of £2.6billion and €8.5billion per annum in the North and South respectively.
• Comprehensive reforms are needed to maximise the social benefit of and provide the strongest possible prevention of corruption in the awarding of public contracts.
This Ard Fheis:
• Affirms the party’s continuing support for social clauses in public procurement contracts as a powerful tool for getting best value out of each public euro/pound spent, and as a multi-tasking instrument of public policy.
• Commends Sinn Féin ministers in the Assembly for their ongoing inclusion of social clauses in the public procurement contracts under their responsibility.
• Commends the Sinn Féin Social Procurement Bill, 2013, which legislates for the mandatory inclusion of social clauses in all public procurement contracts for goods or services including capital construction, as outlined in the Bill, worth in excess of one million euro, and has attracted the support of all parties in Leinster House.
• Congratulates the Sinn Féin Dublin City Council Group for passing a motion on including social procurement clauses in council contracts, and commends this initiative to our elected activists in other local authorities.
• Supports full implementation of the three new EU Public Procurement Directives adopted in January 2014 that, among other worthy features, ensure public contracts can lawfully be used to meet social goals while still taking account of price considerations and providing that any company failing to comply with contractual social clause obligations may be lawfully excluded from public procurement procedures on this basis.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Markievicz/O’Farrell Cumann, Dublin
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 76

This Ard Fheis notes that the procurement process involved in securing public contracts for large capital projects is fraught with difficulties and is vulnerable to failure at a cost of £/€ millions to the public purse and calls on all government departments and councils across the island to safeguard against the mishandling of and poor practice in public procurement processes for public contracts exceeding £10million/€12million.
This should be done by putting in place an independent mechanism to monitor the procurement process and ensure its viability, robustness and ultimate success. This mechanism would assist departments and councils in determining the need for intervention in the case where a process was in danger of failing.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 77

This Ard Fheis notes that:
• The system of Public Private Partnership (PPP) procurement, in the 26 Counties has been wrought with inequalities and a lack of transparency.
• That, too often, communities in dire need of regeneration have been let down by this fundamentally flawed system which in a lot of cases served only the vested interests of property speculators.
• That significant barriers exist which exclude small businesses from the tendering process for public contracts.
Accordingly, this Ard Fheis calls for:
• The strengthening of social clauses within public contracts.
• The immediate removal of the barriers that exist which exclude small businesses from the tendering process for public contracts and the removal of criteria and the red tape excluding indigenous retail businesses from applying for many forms of grant aid.
• A wide-ranging review of the Irish experience of PPP procurement. In particular this should include a review of the equitability, fairness and transparency of the award of public construction contracts and look at improving the role of local and regional construction companies, tradespersons and labour in an effort to provide a boost to small and medium construction companies.
Erris Cumann, Mayo
Markievicz/O’Farrell Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 78

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to:
• Protect Irish interests in the ongoing Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations between the EU and the US.

• Take all measures to remove Investor-State Dispute Settlements (ISDS) from the agreement.
• Take all measures to ensure that the terms of the living agreement cannot breach Irish legislation.
• Publish the findings of the Copenhagen Economics study on TTIP’s potential impact on Ireland.
• Initiate a public debate on the consequences of TTIP on Ireland.
• Take all measures to protect Irish agriculture in TTIP negotiations.
Sinn Féin also affirms that we will not support any trade agreement that includes Investor-State Dispute mechanisms.
Sinn Féin recognises with vigilance the construction of a Regulatory Co-operation Council through TTIP and affirms the position that this body’s authority and remit should allow only for recommendation. Implementation of recommendations should be administered by those elected by and accountable to the citizens of Europe.
Sinn Féin does not support any trade mechanism that allows Irish law to be superseded for corporate interest.
This Ard Fheis welcomes the launch of our national campaign highlighting the potential consequences of TTIP on Ireland and recognises the work of activists and representatives involved in this issue.
Midlands/North-West Cúige
Patrick Cannon Cumann, Dublin
Derry Comhairle Ceantair
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Swinford Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Decent Work and a Living Wage

Motion 79

This Ard Fheis supports and endorses the document ‘Sinn Féin – Campaigning for a Living Wage’, which puts forward proposals to:
• Implement the EU Directive on Part-Time Working giving workers the option of increasing their working hours.
• Prioritise pay policies that address low pay in the public and private sector.
• Deliver policies that tackle excessive pay and remuneration in the public and private sector.
• Acknowledges that a living wage must be underpinned by addressing low pay, the provision of decent public services, robust employment rights and a fair and progressive taxation system.
• Establish strong wage floors in the delivery of collective bargaining and wage-setting mechanisms.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
West Galway Comhairle Ceantair
John O’Reilly Cumann, Galway
Gleeson Cumann, Wexford
Desmond White Cumann, Cavan
O’Neill/De Barra Cumann, Cork
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin
Mick Murray Cumann, Dublin
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 80

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises that meaningful job activation schemes, with measurable outcomes and in keeping with international best practice, remain a key mechanism to job creation strategy.
• Notes that both the Gateway local authority labour activation scheme and Tús Community Work Placement Initiative, in forcing vulnerable citizens under threat of penalty in the form a reduction or suspension of welfare benefits, contravenes Article 1.1 and 2.1 of the International Labour Organisation C029 Forced Labour Convention, ratified by the Irish Government on 2 March 1931 and the Westminster Government on 3 June 1931.
• Expresses concern at the disregard for this convention demonstrated by the implementation of both the Gateway and Tús schemes.
This Ard Fheis:
• Calls on the Irish Government and Northern Assembly, in an all-Ireland 32-county approach, to commit to ensuring that all policy is compliment with state ratified International Labour Organisation (ILO) conventions.
• Requests that both the Irish Government and Northern Assembly make provision for a procedure which allows that all citizens have the right and privilege to seek review of any potential breach of ILO conventions.
• Requests that in the event that a potential breach of any ILO convention is brought to the attention of the Irish Government or the Assembly, that appropriate measures are taken to investigate, through consultation with the ILO, said query and any necessary policy amendments or reforms introduced accordingly.
Six County Cúige

Passed

Motion 81

This Ard Fheis supports the ending of discrimination in hiring practices by making it illegal to use physical appearance as a criterion in employment.
Martin Forsyth Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 82

This Ard Fheis calls for the Sinn Féin Leinster House Jobs and Workers’ Rights spokespersons to review the Protection of Employees (Fixed-Term) Work Act, 2003, in consultation with trade unions to ensure robust legislative provisions are in place to protect workers from abuse of such contracts by employers
Traolach Mac Suibhne Cumann, Cork

Passed

Delivering a Fair Recovery – A New Deal for Rural Ireland

Motion 83

This Ard Fheis acknowledges the efforts made by the Six-County Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill for ensuring equality of Single Farm Payments in terms of the recent CAP reform negotiation, which rectifies an historic imbalance which has impacted greatly on hill farmers. We commend her decisions to maximise the Young Farmers’ Scheme, creating a single region, and her decision to ensure a more rapid transition towards flat-rate payment of Single Farm Payments. We call on the current Government in Dublin to follow Minister Michelle O’Neill’s example to ensure that all historic imbalances which negatively impact on the farming practices of our small farmers in deprived areas are rectified.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 84

This Ard Fheis endorses the principle that all farmers should receive a fair and equitable price for their produce.
• Notes the current difficulties affecting the beef and dairy sectors.
• Endorses the efforts made by Six-County Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill in developing an all-island produce label, and securing new trade markets recognising the rigorous standards and traceability measures in place and sharing of data islandwide by Government departments and which guarantee quality produce.;
Opposes:
• The variation and difference of beef prices offered by processors North and South.
• The discrimination of 26-County-sourced cattle by Northern-based beef processors which they have offensively labelled ‘NOMAD’ by way of the recent introduction of penalties.
• The reluctance of national retailers to source all-island produce.
Calls on retailers to remove all specifications which negatively impact on the all-island agri-food trade.
Seeks the introduction of an all-island agri-food regulator to ensure that producers receive a fair return for their produce.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 85

This Ard Fheis notes that:
• Large meat factories and supermarket chains are currently being allowed to dictate market prices for beef.
• This has led to a situation where beef farmers are at crisis point, being denied a fair price for their produce.
• The impact on the sustainability of farmers’ income has been detrimental.
This Ard Fheis calls on the Minister for Agriculture in the South, Simon Coveney, to intervene and give our beef farmers the protection and help that they need to ensure the sustainability of their livelihoods
This Ard Fheis notes that beef is tracked from field to fork in this country and that this is not the case in terms of the costs and profits incurred and gained throughout the process.
Accordingly, this Ard Fheis calls for:
• All information regarding costs, charges and profits by every commercial entity and/or government body throughout the entire beef/dairy production cycle to be a matter of public record.
Bobby Sands Cumann, Kerry
Robert Emmet Cumann, Tipperary

Passed

Motion 86

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to address the issue of mapping in relation to the farming community and that the retrospective application of penalties under the new digitised mapping system be stopped.
Swinford Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 87

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to address the issues relating to farm inspections so as to ensure farmers receive adequate notice of pending inspections and adequate time to carry out any remedial works.
Swinford Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 88

This Ard Fheis recognises that the Irish Government’s proposed GLAS scheme unfairly discriminates against commonage farmers and calls on the Government to amend the scheme so that commonage farmers will be eligible to apply to the scheme on an equal footing to other farmers.
Midlands/North-West Cúige

Passed

Motion 89

This Ard Fheis condemns the continuous erosion of farm family incomes and demands the:
(a) Reversal of 2012 and 2013 changes to Farm Assist where increases in the assessment of means were introduced and child disregards were abolished.
(b) Abolition of retrospective penalties which unjustly require farmers to pay for discrepancies in the mapping system approved by the Department of Agriculture.
(c) The scrapping of the 50% Collective Agreement Proposal for Commonage/Hill Farmers.
Erris Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 90

This Ard Fheis supports:
• That Sinn Féin – in opposition or in Government as a principle of fairness and equity for all – will seek to adjust the distribution of the single farm payments to provide a reasonable income for all farming families regardless of size. That Sinn Féin declare as unworkable the totally unnecessary, bureaucratic and illogical restrictions put on the entry requirements of GLAS scheme as it applies to West of Ireland hill farmers. This amounts to a deliberate mechanism to restrict payments to certain categories of farmers and increase the payments to large lowland farmers favoured by the present minister.
• That the compensatory payments for ‘Hen Harrier’ designated areas as previously agreed be paid to all farmers so restricted and end the deliberate deprivation caused by the non-payment to farmers whose land is so restricted.
• That Sinn Féin as a principle of fairness and equity ensures by its policies that all socially redistributive payments are paid on the basis of need and not greed.
East Clare Cumann, Clare

Passed

Motion 91

The Ard Fheis recognises the fact that, once lost, plant varieties are essentially irreplaceable and acknowledges the role played by farmers, horticulturalists and gardeners in protecting traditional food production systems and biodiversity.
This Ard Fheis also commends the work of all seed saver groups across Ireland and internationally who contribute to contribute to future food security through the protection of genetic diversity in plants and crops.
While we welcome suitable health and safety regulations and consumer protections, this Ard Fheis is opposed to legislation which threatens the above-named groups through unnecessary costs or restrictive bureaucracy at the expense of small farmers and producers and rejects any form of seed patenting.
This Ard Fheis also calls for inclusion in relevant legislation of rules specific to organic varieties which recognise that organic plants adapt to their environments over time.
Midlands/North-West Cúige

Passed

Motion 92

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises the difficulties experienced by Irish fishermen in securing a viable livelihood due to both natural and regulatory barriers.
• Acknowledges that the Irish fishing industry has been poorly represented by the Irish Government at EU level in recent decades.
• Notes that, since the mid-1990s, there has been a sharp and steady decline in commercial fishing. This has caused considerable economic hardship for fishermen.
Accordingly, this Ard Fheis calls for:
• An end to the exclusion of fishermen from the Seafarers’ Allowance Scheme in the 26 Counties.
• The party to campaign for the introduction of a Single Boat Payment at European level.
Furthermore, this Ard Fheis calls on the party to formulate a Commercial Fisheries Policy Document.
The policy should address the main issues, which are:
• Lack of Irish quota – this has resulted in Irish fishing vessels being unable provide an adequate financial return for owners and crews.
• Lack of income – fishermen and their families are already struggling financially and a direct income reduction of €31.46million is predicted for 2015.
• Lack of political support – has had the effect of alienating coastal community populations from the present political process.
• Imposition of penalties and Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority heavy-handed tactics and penalties have resulted in the criminalisation of fishermen for minor infringements.
• Distribution of quota (mackerel and herring) – unfairly distributed among our fisheries ports, mainly due to past political cronyism.
• Discard – because of the need to keep within regulation, fishermen are forced to dump perfectly saleable fish back into the sea. The Irish Government and EU are now trying to end this practice by introducing regulations which, fishermen say, are unworkable.
Ireland South Cúige
McGrath/O’Brien Cumann, Waterford

Passed

Motion 93

This Ard Fheis will oppose any attempt to introduce a ‘rod licence’ or similar taxation on recreational sea anglers.
Meaney/Dunne Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 94

This Ard Fheis supports the ban on commercial fishing of sea bass in Irish waters and will oppose any attempt to overturn current legislation.
Meaney/Dunne Cumann, Dublin

Failed

Motion 95

This Ard Fheis condemns the selling off of Arramara Teoranta, a valuable state asset, by Údarás na Gaeltachta and demands that the current Irish Government reaffirms the seaweed harvesting rights of indigenous seaweed cutters, landowners and local communities in order to maximise the benefits to local areas using a fair trade model.
Erris Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 96

This Ard Fheis notes the need to protect the integrity of the landscape, natural resources and areas of natural beauty in rural areas.
This Ard Fheis calls for flexible rural planning policy incorporating realistic and mindful planning criteria that addresses the needs of non-farming rural dwellers in order to promote vibrant rural communities that can sustain and grow the rural population.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair
Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 97

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises the value and worth of the LEADER rural development programme in supporting local community development and rural diversification across Ireland.
• Supports the principle of community-led local development.
• Mandates Sinn Féin to campaign for the continuance of community control in the implementation of the LEADER programme.
Ireland South Cúige

Passed

Motion 98

This Ard Fheis recognises the impact of the end of the National Rural Broadband Scheme for many households and communities across the state, identifies the roll-out of an adequate broadband network across the state to be a priority, and calls on the Irish Government to ensure the necessary investment to provide an effective broadband service across the state.
Midlands/North-West Cúige
Bobby Sands Cumann, Kerry
Erris Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 99

This Ard Fheis holds that companies such as Eircom, National Roads Authority, Iarnród Éireann, etc. that are entrusted to provide essential infrastructure should not be permitted to discriminate against less-populated and remote areas. Companies who fail to deliver a service that is advertised and available as a state service should sanctioned by a Government-appointed regulator.

Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 100

This Ard Fheis recognises that there are major differences in the emergency ambulance response times across the 26 Counties. In the west of Ireland for certain life-threatening cases, 55% of incidents were responded to outside the target window. The representative body of the Ambulance Service has cited a lack of personnel and vehicles, as well as a reduction in rostered hours as a cause of serious delays. This Ard Fheis supports the funding of an additional two ambulances and personnel for each of the four regions.
North Clare Cumann, Clare

Passed

Motion 101

This Ard Fheis notes the importance of the local post office in communities, especially in rural areas.
This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to negotiate a comprehensive review of the Postal Services Directive, including its implementation across EU Member States and the outcomes in terms of postal services and associated social benefits.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Irish Government to hold the European institutions accountable for ensuring that transparent and effective impact assessments for rural proofing the Postal Services Directive become available to Ireland and other Member States.
We further call on the Irish Government to do all within its current capabilities to maintain and enhance the rural post office network.
Midlands/North-West Cúige
Gleeson Cumann, Wexford

Passed

Motion 102

This Ard Fheis calls on the incoming Ard Chomhairle to address issues of regional disparity by developing a comprehensive equality-based strategy to enhance investment in infrastructure and employment opportunities across the west of the island.
In terms of the Six Counties, this Ard Fheis calls for the development of a strategy to see the Programme for Government commitment towards tackling regional disparity implemented with regards to lack of infrastructure and employment opportunities west of the Bann and with a particular focus upon the north-west (including Donegal) and including continued support for the implementation of the ‘One Plan’ for the regeneration of Derry City and region.
Derry Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 103

This Ard Fheis:
• Commends the decision by Six-County Agriculture and Rural Affairs Minister Michelle O’Neill to relocate her departmental headquarters to the north-west.
• Notes that this is the first Six-County departmental headquarters to be located outside the greater Belfast area.
• Acknowledges the economic benefits this will have for the local area.
• Calls on Sinn Féin to adopt a policy which advocates a fairer distribution of public sector jobs.
Armagh Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Delivering a Fair Recovery – Investing in Public Services

Motion 104

This Ard Fheis:
- Notes that the Irish health system needs root and branch reform so that citizens can access an equitable system that is focused on the health needs of the population with a major focus on equal access to primary care.
- Calls for a fully enforceable right to health and healthcare to be enshrined in a future all-Ireland Charter of Rights and a future United Irish Constitution, and seek in the meantime to amend the current 1937 Irish Constitution to include these rights.
- Calls for a review of progress with the implementation of ‘A Vision for Change’ in the 26 Counties and ‘Transforming Your Care’ in the Six Counties with a definite roadmap towards their full implementation, including a health inequalities framework and an assessment of current services, the NGO sector and how best to integrate them.
- Calls for further development in North-South co-operation on health issues including the introduction of services not currently accessible on the island of Ireland, such as children’s cardiac services, addiction services and co-operation on mental health and child exploitation.
- Calls for significant investment in disability services that have been cruelly and continually cut by €159million since 2008 to ensure an appropriate and equitable service for all.
- Calls for an adequate number of consultants, nursing and allied health professional staff in hospitals and primary care to reverse the massive cuts to these numbers over past years and adequate workforce planning processes to offset an over-reliance on agency staff.
- Calls for further reform of the Medical Card system in the 26 Counties, including a streamlining and a redesigning of a less onerous application process, one that takes the difficulties of those with health issues into account, with specific guidelines for children with serious illnesses.
- Calls for the earliest possible provision of primary care that is totally free at the point of service and is also available to all asylum seekers on the island of Ireland.
- Reaffirms our commitment to a single tier system of publicly-funded healthcare, free at the point of delivery, and paid for through fair and progressive taxation.
- Calls for under 16s to be included in the mental capacity legislation being brought forward in the Six Counties.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Seamus Mac Sionnaigh Cumann, Meath

Passed

Motion 105

This Ard Fheis proposes that the valuable research that exists on state databases be used when planning and implementing care for people who require it. Health promotion should be paramount in care and the use of the health document. ‘Health Fairness for All’ should be implemented. Primary care was an intrinsic part of that 2001 document but, 13 years later, there are only seven primary care units. This would not suggest fairness for all. Funds need to be made available for primary care infrastructure where patient focus is in health using best practice and evidence practice.
Paddy Wright Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 106

This Ard Fheis proposes that personal medications brought into a hospital with a patient are not destroyed. Instead, a means be identified to return the medications to the patient’s home or, if appropriate, to be dispensed to the patient in the hospital.
Kevin Coen/Martin Savage Cumann, Sligo

Passed

Motion 107

This Ard Fheis supports registered nurses throughout the state in their opposition to the substantial increase in registration fees to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland and, furthermore, calls for full transparency from the NMBI.
Dublin Cúige

Passed

Motion 108

This Ard Fheis condemns the recent HSE directive that all Care of the Elderly facilities will now have a depleted ratio of registered Nurses and furthermore call on the Health Service Executive to re-engage with the nursing unions on this matter.
Markievicz/Ryan Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 109

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to undertake a root and branch reform of the Health Service Executive Management and administration to make responsibility and accountability central. Also that the necessary disciplinary procedures are taken against personnel who fail patients through negligence or other such actions and that care provided at its facilities always respects the rights and autonomy of patients under HSE care.
Mayo Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 110

This Ard Fheis calls for specialist weekend A&E facilities to ensure that drink-related issues are diverted away from critical A&E services so as to minimise the impact on these services during weekends.
John O’Reilly Cumann, Galway
West Galway Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 111

This Ard Fheis expresses its anger at the mismanagement of the health service budget in the North, calls on the Health Minister to review health spending priorities (particularly the payment of bonuses to already highly-paid staff) and ensure that Health Trust areas have the proper resources needed in order to deliver an effective and efficient health service for all our citizens.
Billy Reid Cumann, Tyrone

Passed

Motion 112

This Ard Fheis calls for an all-Ireland approach to tackling cervical cancer and also the lowering of the screening age following the tragic passing of Sorcha Glen.
Derry City Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 113

This Ard Fheis recognises the urgent need for the funding, treatment, research, acknowledgement, education and awareness of Ehlers–Danlos syndrome (EDS).
Duhallow Martyrs Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 114

This Ard Fheis supports the retention of the only dedicated Multiple Sclerosis Respite Centre in the North.
It further notes the importance that appropriate respite provision gives to MS sufferers and their families and calls on the Minister for Health, Social Services and Public Safety to publicly commit to retaining, enhancing and promoting the only MS Respite Centre to people across all five Health Trust areas.
Joe Cahill Cumann, Antrim
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 115

This Ard Fheis recognises that people on sickness/disability depend heavily on expensive medication and treatment and that where people with sicknesses such as Crohn’s disease and MS (that have irregular patterns) a Medical Card is essential even where they may be able to return temporarily to work.

Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 116

This Ard Fheis calls on members of Sinn Féin and its leadership to sign the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Charter. This charter recognises
FIXME

Passed

Motion 117

Due to the lack of funding for home care packages, there is a tendency for hospitals to discharge elderly patients into privately-owned residential nursing home care. This Ard Fheis proposes that, when a hospital is discharging a vulnerable elderly patient to residential nursing home care for quality of life reasons, and in consultation with the patient and their family, consideration be given to funding adequate home care packages directly from Hospital Transitional Funding or directly allocated funding. This would allow many elderly people to remain within and be part of the community for months if not years longer than is currently the case.
Kevin Coen/Martin Savage Cumann, Sligo

Passed

Motion 118

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises the value of the Disability Federation of Ireland (DFI), which advocates for over 595,000 Irish people who live with a disability and participates in the European Disability Forum (EDF), which represents the interests of the 80million people in Europe who are disabled.
• Supports the vision of an Ireland and a Europe where society values every disabled person and where the fundamental freedom exists to exercise the rights reflected in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, the European Disability Strategy 2010-2020 and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
• Mandates Sinn Féin to campaign for a European Directorate for Disability Inclusion and the appointment of a European Vice-President dedicated to disability issues.
• Supports the campaign of the DFI and EDF for a suite of practical and legal protections against the negative impacts of austerity on people with disabilities.
Ireland South Cúige

Passed

Motion 119

This Ard Fheis:
- Calls for a review of progress with the implementation of ‘A Vision for Change’ (AVFC) in the 26 Counties and ‘Transforming Your Care’ in the Six Counties and a definite roadmap towards their full implementation, including a health inequalities framework and an assessment of current services and those provided by the NGO sector and how best to integrate them
- Calls for further development of suicide prevention initiatives and supports; the funding of the roll-out of Suicide Crisis Assessment Nurses in primary care and liaison nurses in A&E units; and the extension of counselling at primary care level.
- Recognising the slow pace of implementation of AVFC as one of its main weaknesses and noting the Government’s austerity programme as a key factor:
- Calls for mental health funding to be increased to the target of 10% of the overall health spend in line with AVFC to ensure that at least a quarter of the 12,000 posts proposed by AVFC, and currently unfilled, are filled with appropriate urgency.
Ard Chomhairle
Clonmult Martyrs Cumann, Cork
Traolach Mac Suibhne Cumann, Cork
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 120

This Ard Fheis recognises the disgraceful lack of investment by successive governments in mental health services, particularly in the adolescent age group. We therefore recommend the development and implementation of a mental health awareness programme to be rolled out in all second-level schools across the state as a matter of urgency.
Keating/Sands Cumann, Waterford
Barrett/MacCurtain Cumann, Cork
Dublin Cúige

Passed

Motion 121

This Ard Fheis calls for the regulation of E-cigarettes across the island, including a ban on their use in workplaces and the sale of them to minors.
Gerard Casey Cumann, Antrim

Passed

Motion 122

This Ard Fheis affirms Sinn Féin’s current policy on abortion and further:
• Acknowledges that the issue of fatal foetal abnormalities is a very serious and complex aspect of the abortion issue that requires compassion.
• Notes that the law, North and South, prevents women with fatal foetal abnormality pregnancies from accessing legal abortion services in Ireland should they wish to do so; notes the further stress that can result from having to travel to access services; that many women cannot afford to travel to access these services; and that others do not have the required immigration status that allows them to travel.
• Calls for legal frameworks to be introduced North and South that would allow women to access abortion services under these limited circumstances.
• Believes in cases where a woman wishes to continue with the pregnancy she should be fully supported in that decision and all efforts should be made to ensure appropriate care and consideration.
• Calls for the introduction of an all-Ireland protocol on pre-natal diagnostic screening in pregnancy.
Ard Chomhairle
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 123

This Ard Fheis calls for all children who are diagnosed with fatal illnesses or disabilities before they are born to receive the full protection of the state and that abortion not be permissible under law in these circumstances.

Barrett/MacCurtain Cumann, Cork

Failed

Motion 124

That this Ard Fheis supports the calls for the repeal of the 8th Amendment of Bunreacht na hEireann. Sinn Féin pledges to campaign in favour of this in any future referendum on the issue.
James Connolly Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 125

This Ard Fheis believes that women’s reproductive rights, and control over a woman’s body and sexuality are entirely a matter for the woman concerned in each particular circumstance.
Pádraig Pearse Cumann, Derry

Failed

The Way Forward in Education

Motion 126

This Ard Fheis:
- Commends our Assembly and Dáil spokespersons on Education for their work in highlighting educational inequalities and work in attempting to end two-tier education systems.
- Welcomes the continued co-operation between Departments of Education on the island through their work on the North/South Ministerial Council.

- Further calls for greater collaboration of the Departments of Education and relevant statutory bodies to meet the educational needs of all children on the island and particularly those along the Border Corridor.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Thomas Ashe Cumann, Ashbourne
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 127

Sinn Féin calls on the Irish Government to reverse the cuts and to provide adequate and long-term funding for the Education Completion Programme which gives vital support to children at risk of early school leaving in projects such as after-school programmes, breakfast clubs, homework clubs and summer projects.
Patrick Cannon Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 128

This Ard Fheis calls on the Six-County County Minister for Employment and Learning to urgently introduce a new system to meet the needs of young people with special employment and educational needs post-19.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Minister for Employment and Learning to make more effective the department’s strategy for helping young people not in education, employment and training.
Cúige na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 129

This Ard Fheis calls on the Department of Education and Skills in the 26 Counties to restore 100% resource hours to all pupils with special educational needs.
Carndonagh/Malin Cumann, Donegal

Passed

Motion 130

This Ard Fheis welcomes the establishment of the new Education Authority under the Sinn Féin Minister for Education in the North and calls on the Six-County Executive to legislate to include community representation on the new body.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 131

This Ard Fheis calls on the Department of Education in the 26 Counties to instruct all schools that they should have a unisex approach to school uniforms and that all students, irrespective of their gender identity, should have the choice of wearing either a skirt or trousers.
Devlin/Plunkett Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 132

This Ard Fheis:
• Welcomes the publication of the ‘Irish-Medium Post-Primary Review’ by the Sinn Féin Education Minister in the Assembly, which builds on the experiences of the Irish-medium sector throughout the island in expanding post-primary provision.
• Further welcomes the granting of proposals for the new Colaiste Dhoire in Dungiven.
• Calls on the 26 Counties to address the needs of students who wish to be educated through the medium of Irish in the forthcoming legislation on school admissions.
• Calls on both administrations, North and South, to continue to develop and support Irish-medium primary and post-primary provision across the island.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Gerard Casey Cumann, Antrim

Passed

Motion 133

This Ard Fheis calls for the retention of the requirement for Leaving Certificate Irish for third-level courses in universities in the 26 Counties.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 134

This Ard Fheis:
- Opposes the decision by the North’s Minister for Employment and Learning to threaten to cut places for students in further and higher education.
- Calls on the management of the universities in the North not to reduce the number of student places.
- Condemns consistent cuts to the 26 Counties’ third-level sector implemented by the Minister for Education and Skills and notes the 10% drop in academic staff from 2008 to 2012 while student numbers rose by 12% from 2009-2013 with per-student Government funding for third level now less than a decade ago, something which has serious implications for the quality of learning and teaching.
- Reaffirms Sinn Féin’s commitment to publicly-funded third-level education and calls for no further increases to the student contribution payable in the 26 Counties
Cúige na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 135

This Ard Fheis recognises the high levels of unemployment in the south-east and the low levels of third-level and fourth-level educational attainment in the region and support the provision of a university in the south-east to service and meet the needs of the community and notes:
• That the south-east is the only region on the island without a university.
• The stalling of the IT Carlow and Waterford Institute of Technology merger and application for Technological University status.
• A failure on behalf of Government to properly validate and resource progression towards a university in the region.
• That any university in the region must meet the highest standards and criteria and take its place among the top universities on the island.
This Ard Fheis therefore calls on the Irish Government to:
• Recommit to a university in the south-east.
• Oversee the carrying out of a fully independent validation of the ability of IT Carlow and Waterford Institute of Technology to meet the Technological University criteria.
• Engage with and work with all stakeholders to ensure that a university is provided in the region in the most appropriate, practical and timely way.
Waterford Comhairle Ceantair
Ending the Housing Crisis

Passed

Motion 136

This Ard Fheis:
• Notes the continuing crisis in housing and homelessness with over 98,000 households on housing waiting lists and record numbers in emergency accommodation or sleeping rough.
• Rejects the 26-County Government’s recent housing strategy which is a plan which will fail to deliver for the hundreds of thousands of citizens in need of housing in this state and continues to place the responsibility for housing on the private and voluntary sectors. It also completely fails to contain any measures to address the homelessness crisis with no major investment in housing announced despite Government spin.
• Strongly believes that a solution to the housing crisis is possible and that we can end long-term homelessness and rough sleeping if the political will exists to do so.
Sinn Féin commits to:
• Invest €1billion on top of Government spending to begin building at least 6,600 homes in 18 months, creating jobs and taking pressure off private rental properties.
• Introduce a Rent Control Scheme which will ensure rents stabilise and protect against unfair increases.
• Protect tenants’ deposits by establishing a Deposit Retention Scheme run by the Private Residential Tenancies Board.
• Tie homeless spending to need and ensure that adequate emergency accommodation is put in place.
• Ensure follow-on accommodation is put in place for those coming out of homelessness and emergency accommodation.
• Amend Housing Assistance Payment rules so that recipients retain their position on the principle housing list
• Ensure full drawdown of Traveller accommodation funding by local authorities.
• Make it illegal to discriminate against recipients of rent support payments.
• Enshrine the right to housing in Bunreacht na hÉireann.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Devlin/Plunkett Cumann, Dublin
Thomas Ashe Cumann, Ashbourne
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 137

That this Ard Fheis establishes an All-Ireland Housing Group to review and advise on housing policy, review and advise on present social housing delivery, review and advise on the unregulated private rented sector (including upward-only pricing and achieving a better balance between tenant and landlord), effective rural housing strategy, reviewing all relevant housing legislation, the role of housing associations and to advise on other housing matters.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Cúige na 6 Chontae
Traolach MacSuibhne Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 138

This Ard Fheis recognises the serious problems that exist in planning which have consistently allowed the building of huge housing estates without proper infrastructure to allow communities to grow. We commit our elected representatives to ensure that any planning for housing has adequate infrastructure as part of the application.
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Cúige na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 139

This Ard Fheis commends the work of residents’ associations across the Island who strive to make their communities safer and better places to live. We recognise the under-resourcing of these groups by statutory and housing authorities and commit the party to campaign for a better deal for these community groups.
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Cúige na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 140

This Ard Fheis calls for a Sinn Féin campaign for legislation to allow the state to set controls on rents and other costs that are against the common good of society.
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 141

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to prioritise the investigation of the (muscovite mica) Mica defective block issue by the Department of the Environment and local government and to provide a financial redress scheme for all affected householders.
Carndonagh/Malin Cumann, Donegal

Passed

Motion 142

This Ard Fheis commits itself to actively campaign in the North for the retention of a single housing authority to:
• Ensure the delivery of social housing remains in public hands.
• Deliver strategic planning for housing services, including homelessness.
• Tackle sectarianism in the building and delivery of social housing.
• Ensure that all social housing is planned on the basis of social need.
• See the delivery of a partnership with communities which strengthens community participation in all levels of housing.
Cúige na 6 Chontae
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 143

This Ard Fheis calls for the Irish Government to build social houses which will be the responsibility of each local council in the 26 Counties. This will address and ensure we can develop communities in a modern and successfully way. Initially with a major 5 year program we should successfully be able to address many of the deficits left by governments who cared to help only the bond holders and those who served their needs.
Paddy Wright Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 144

This Ard Fheis acknowledges the financial strain imposed on a number of local authorities as a result of the winding down of the Land Aggregation Scheme. In the midst of a housing crisis, we are calling on Government to provide adequate funding to local councils to construct social housing so as to fully utilise lands that are planned and serviced for such a use.
Mairéad Farrell Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 145

This Ard Fheis supports an affordable house building programme, where houses can then be sold to first-time buyers at cost price (land plus building cost). There will be stipulations that no one can own more than one, they cannot be used for private rented accommodation, and can only be resold at the original cost price adjusted for inflation. The money recouped from the sale of these homes is then reinvested into building more houses. The same outlay will continue to provide new homes into the future.
Traolach Mac Suibhne Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 146

This Ard Fheis calls for stricter vetting of local authority tenants as there are loopholes for repeat offenders of anti-social behaviour to be housed in local authority housing.
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 147

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to recognise that the current rent supplement thresholds are not fit for purpose and to take immediate steps to bring them in to line with current market rents.
This Ard Fheis also calls for increased powers and resources for the Private Rented Tenancies Board to ensure that the rights and responsibilities of both tenants and landlords are upheld.
Devlin/Plunkett Cumann, Dublin
Patrick Cannon Cumann, Dublin
Peadar Clancy/Mairéad Farrell Cumann, Clare

Passed

Motion 148

This Ard Fheis:
• Notes that over 4,000 men, women and children are currently living within the direct provision system while they await decisions on their asylum applications; many, including children, have lived within this system for over seven years, with most residents having lived within the system for three years or more.
• Takes account of the fact that asylum seekers are not entitled to seek or enter into employment and are unable to access further education;.
• Recognises that the direct provision system gives parents little freedom to make decisions about the upbringing of their children and little opportunity to live a normal family life.
• Recognises that reception measures for persons claiming asylum must respect human dignity.
• Mandates Sinn Féin to oppose the direct provision system, calling for its abolition and instead support reception measures that enshrine principles of dignity, autonomy and integration.
Ireland South Cúige
Charlie McGlade Cumann, Dublin
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Hurson/Quirke Cumann, Galway
O’Malley/McEvilly Cumann, Castlebar, Mayo

Passed

Motion 149

This Ard Fheis recognises the right of the Traveller community to travel throughout Ireland without any onerous or undue restrictions being placed upon them. In this regard we recognise that more transient/halting sites and group housing schemes should be made available with appropriate facilities at these sites.
We also call on this Ard Fheis to recognise that the Traveller community have built up an ancient right to sell their goods and wares especially at fairs throughout Ireland. In this regard, we believe that they should be allowed to do so and be accommodated by local authorities in this regard.
Martin Hurson Cumann, UCC

Passed

International Solidarity

Motion 150

This Ard Fheis notes the historic referendum held in Catalonia on 9 November 2014 and calls on the Spanish Government to legislate to allow for Catalonia to hold a binding referendum on independence.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 151

This Ard Fheis endorses the appointment of a national spokesperson on the Diaspora for the party and calls on Sinn Féin to:
• Establish a party working group through the office of the national spokesperson to develop policy on Diaspora matters.
• Liaise and consult with stakeholders on the development of the policy.
• Ensure that the policy being developed is included in any Programme for Government that the party would devise and implement.
• In the interim, the Irish Government is held to account and encouraged to take on any policy initiatives Sinn Féin brings forward.
• The party, through our membership and elected representatives, keeps Diaspora issues on the agenda and looks for positive reforms in the institutions and organisations within which we are represented.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 152

This Ard Fheis condemns all forms of state terror in light of the 9 December 2014 US Senate report into the CIA’s illegal and brutal treatment of its prisoners.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 153

On 17 October 2011, an International Conference for the Resolution of the Conflict in the Basque Country took place in Donostia/San Sebastian. International representation included former Secretary General of the UN Kofi Annan and Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams. As an outcome of the conference, the Declaration of Aiete was presented. This declaration proposed a process of dialogue and negotiation and a prior declaration of a definitive cessation of armed activity from ETA. ETA’s declaration of a definitive cessation was announced a few days later, creating a unique and historic opportunity to address the causes as well as the consequences of the conflict.
In July 2014, ETA released a further statement announcing a winding down of their military structures and commencement of a process to deal with the issue of arms.
This new scenario, however, requires more steps to progress towards a political solution to the conflict. The cessation of armed activity, winding down of ETA military structures and a commencement of a process dealing with the issue of arms must be responded to with political measures to create the conditions for achieving a just and lasting peace.
This Ard Fheis calls on the Spanish and French authorities to implement the following measures to consolidate the Basque peace process:
- The end of the policy of dispersal (an arbitrary measure applied to Basque prisoners) and the immediate transfer to prisons closer to their families as a first step to an early release process of all politically-motivated prisoners.
- The immediate release of prisoners eligible for parole.
- The immediate release of seriously-ill prisoners who, according to current legislation, should be freed to receive adequate treatment for their illnesses.
- The immediate release of Arnaldo Otegi and all those imprisoned for their political views or political activity in political parties, youth organisations, social movements or in the media.
- The dismissal of the processes related to these issues, as well as the removal of all European arrest warrants that may have been issued for actions of the same type.
This Ard Fheis further calls on the Irish Government and the political institutions to take an active role in demanding the Spanish Government shift its current policy of obstruction that is diminishing this historical opportunity and to instead promote and support a process of dialogue to achieve a just and lasting peace in the Basque Country.
Ard Chomhairle
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 154

This Ard Fheis welcomes the appointment of Martina Anderson MEP as Chair of the Palestinian Delegation of the European Parliament and supports her in using that position to highlight the injustices being inflicted on the Palestinian people in their quest for freedom and statehood.
This Ard Fheis condemns the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip over 50 days in July and August 2014 that resulted in the deaths of over 2,200 Palestinians, of whom 519 were children under the age of 12. We believe the deliberate bombing of civilian infrastructure such as hospitals and schools constitutes a war crime and therefore ought to be investigated by the International War Crimes Tribunal.
We call for the immediate lifting of the punitive and illegal siege of the Gaza Strip, the opening of all border crossings, as well as the sea port of Gaza and the extension of the fishing zone.
This Ard Fheis condemns the continuing Israeli annexation of Palestinian land in the West Bank and East Jerusalem which contravenes international law and the Geneva Convention of 1949. We demand the implementation of United Nations resolutions and the enforcement of international law. Furthermore, we condemn the highly provocative Israeli incursions into the Al-Haram al-Sharif compound in East Jerusalem, one of the three most important sites in Islam.
This Ard Fheis extends our continuing solidarity with the people of Palestine and urges full support for the boycott and divestment (BDS) campaign of Israeli goods and services. We demand particularly that the Irish Government ends immediately its procurement of armaments from Israeli arms manufacturers.
This Ard Fheis welcomes the motions that were supported in both the Seanad and the Dáil calling on the Irish Government to formally recognise the State of Palestinian on the basis of the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as the capital. We call on the Irish Government to do this without further delay.
Ard Chomhairle
Mick Murray Cumann, Dublin
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Smith/Farrell/Griffith Cumann, Dublin
Ireland South Cúige
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 155

This Ard Fheis welcomes continued progress in the Colombian peace process negotiations. We call on President Santos to use his re-election to ensure that the Colombian Government will finalise and implement a negotiated and durable peace process with FARC.
We regret the decision of the Dáil to pass the EU Free Trade Agreement with Colombia. This Agreement will not benefit the average Colombian economically and the human rights clauses are not strong enough considering the Colombian Government’s disgraceful human rights record.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

Motion 156

This Ard Fheis sends solidarity greetings to the Argentine Government in their fight against private vulture funds who are undermining their debt restructuring deals and trying to bankrupt the country.
This Ard Fheis reiterates our support for self-determination of those governments in South America and Central America and the Caribbean to pursue policies on which they were elected free from outside intervention and internal destabilisation. We applaud those whose policies are effectively tackling poverty, inequality and racism in the region.
This Ard Fheis also notes the re-election of Evo Morales as President of Bolivia and his continuation of carrying out progressive socio-economic reforms which are reducing poverty and inequality in the country.
We also note that the democratically-elected Government in Venezuela continues to face attempts by some in the right-wing opposition to destabilise the country through economic and directly violent means.
Ard Chomhairle

Passed

A Republic for All – Political Reform and Equality

Motion 157

This Ard Fheis reaffirms its support for equality in all of its forms and its support for marriage equality for the LGBTI community.
This Ard Fheis calls for:
• All members of Sinn Féin to campaign vigorously in favour of marriage equality in the referendum scheduled for the 26 Counties this year.
• For legislation to be enacted in the Assembly to allow the same rights for LGBTI citizens in the Six Counties
• Opposes attempts by the DUP to pass their so-called ‘Conscience Clause’ which would seek to deny equal rights to LGBTI citizens.
Ard Chomhairle
Pádraig Pearse Cumann, Derry
Devlin/Plunkett Cumann, Dublin
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 158

This Ard Fheis:
- Recognises that the economic crisis has rightly focused attention on serious deficiencies within the political system and that citizens have become justifiably disillusioned with a political system that has failed them, which is too far removed from their everyday lives and is incapable of resolving current difficulties or delivering for ordinary citizens.
- Envisages that, in a real Republic, citizens would have rights and that society would be organised around these rights on core republican and democratic values, ensuring equality for all.
- Every sector would be regulated transparently so that all its institutions and agencies would be accountable.
- Condemns the Fine Gael/Labour Coalition for their abject failure in fulfilling its promises on reforming politics and our institutions, a failure which has been underscored by a series of debacles and blatant cronyism, including the Seanad by-election and the McNulty affair which have all compounded the lack of public trust in politics.
Calls on the Irish Government to:
- Modernise public sector governance in the wider context of political reform, including public appointments which must be open, transparent and competitive, based on merit rather than cronyism.
- End the use of guillotines on legislation and debate
- Implement the Good Friday Agreement commitment of an All-Ireland Civic and Consultative Forum.
- Introduce immediate speaking and consultative rights for Northern MPs and Assembly members in the Dáil and Seanad.
- Reverse the undemocratic practice of Cabinet committees taking executive decisions exclusively to formal meetings of the Government itself (including the four-member Economic Management Council.
- Urgently expedite the recommendations from the Constitutional Convention to referenda stage and allow citizens to now have their say, including reducing the voting age to 16; amending the women in the home clause; marriage equality; Presidential voting rights for citizens in the North and also those living outside Ireland; Dáil reform; electing the Ceann Comhairle through secret ballot); economic, social and cultural rights.
Calls on the Irish Government and the Seanad Reform Working Group to:
- Fully engage with all parties and groups within the Oireachtas but also broader civic society, to consider how best to reform the Seanad to ensure that it becomes a fully inclusive, representative and accountable institution.
- Introduce direct election by way of universal franchise of all Irish citizens.
- Introduce Northern and Diaspora representation.
- Introduce 50 per cent women members.
- Ensure representation of marginalised minority groups within Irish society.
Ard Chomhairle
Wolfe Tone Cumann, Kildare

Passed

Motion 159

This Ard Fheis calls for legislation whereby any citizen of voting age can, by obtaining a required amount of signatures, trigger a referendum within a specific time frame.
Thomas Ashe/Mairéad Farrell Cumann, Longford

Passed

Motion 160

This Ard Fheis notes that:
• Too often the system of pensions and expenses for elected politicians at both a state and local authority level is often excessive and disproportionate.
• Some recent reforms in the system of pensions for elected politicians in the 26 Counties are incomplete, insofar as they are not retrospectively applied.
• In particular there is a group of 119 former Oireachtas Ministers in receipt of double pensions under the former system.
Accordingly, this Ard Fheis calls for:
• A cap on the salaries, expenses and pensions of all members of the Oireachtas and local authorities.
• The retrospective application of all new pension arrangements for the highest.
Cork City Comhairle Ceantair
Volunteer Diarmuid O’Neill Cumann, Cork
Lawlor/Mulvihill/Clashmealcon Martyrs Cumann, Kerry

Passed

Motion 161

This Ard Fheis calls for of the pension system for public representatives to be brought into line with the experience of ordinary workers where there is no receipt of a pension until the legal retirement age. In the 26 Counties this would involve the retrospective application of the Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012, which currently applies the legal retirement age only to those new entrants after 1st January 2013.
Hogan/Riain/Loinsigh Cumann, Limerick

Passed

Motion 162

This Ard Fheis reaffirms the existing party position on independent public bodies (also known as Quasi-Non-Governmental Organisations or “quangos”), as follows:
- Sinn Féin is opposed to the creation of unnecessary quangos, in particular where the mandated work could be appropriately carried out within a Government department or other existing public body.
- We recognise, however, that certain public functions are best carried out by a public body that is independent from Government, in particular where Constitutional and other fundamental rights of citizens are at issue and/or where the public interest should be protected from vested interests.
- We affirm that this is the test we apply to determine whether to support or oppose the continuing existence of the current independent public bodies or the creation of new independent public bodies.
- In all cases, public funding of such bodies should be dependent on full transparency and accountability for their use of public funds and ensure that the terms of remuneration for management does not exceed the equivalent in the Civil Service.
- Likewise, public appointments to management boards and/or CEO positions within these bodies should be subject to an open and transparent process. All such appointments must be merit-based and operate under affirmative action principles to ensure increased diversity.
- The Ard Fheis resolves that Sinn Féin in Government will undertake a review of all such bodies with a view to retaining only those who meet the above criteria and bringing all other functions back under Government Departmental auspices.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 163

Recognising that there is presently a Constitutional limit to the number of ministers that can sit in Cabinet in the 26 Counties (set at 15), this Ard Fheis:
- Calls on the Ard Chomhairle to review previous policy commitments to additional ministries or junior ministries in the 26-County Executive, and to do this at the earliest opportunity in 2015.
- Resolves to defer making further policy commitments regarding proposed Cabinet positions until this analysis can be completed;
- Further resolves that a cost-benefit analysis should always be undertaken before recommending Government Departmental reorganisation to ensure that the potential benefit to the people sufficiently outweighs the cost of ensuing disruption to the delivery of substantive work by the Department/s concerned.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae

Passed

Motion 164

This Ard Fheis recognises the important role of the Constitution as the most fundamental guarantee of the rights of every citizen and also recognises that true equality in Irish society cannot be realised whilst the Constitution fuses the competing interests of religion and government for the people.
Sinn Féin therefore commits to removing all religious references from Bunreacht na hÉireann, guaranteeing the freedom of conscience and religious thought of every citizen and creating a system of government which derives its authority from those it serves, the people of Ireland.
Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 165

This Ard Fheis believes that Sinn Féin is committed to the separation of church and state in all circumstances as the basis for building a genuinely democratic and inclusive republic and therefore commits to excluding all religious instruction and all personal faith beliefs from the formulation and endorsement of law and policy across this island.
Pádraig Pearse Cumann, Derry

Passed

Motion 166

This Ard Fheis calls on central and local government to fully implement flexible working and working from home arrangements where appropriate and recognises that this will lead to:
• Less travel for commuters, especially in rural areas.
• Better productivity.
• Less sickness absence.
• Significant office and estate savings.
• Environmental benefits.
• Reduced congestion.
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 167

This Ard Fheis recognises the substantial contribution young people make to our society. It further notes the extension of voting rights to people aged 16 and 17 for the recent referendum on Scottish independence and welcomes the positive impact this had on participatory democracy in Scotland. This Ard Fheis therefore calls for the voting age for all future elections and referenda on this island to be lowered to 16.
Six-County Cúige
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 168

This Ard Fheis proposes that to provide truly democratic electoral results, the Ard Chomhairle should explore the possibility of bringing in a mandatory voting scheme. This should be based on the Australian model and should be introduced on a 26-County basis.
Piarais McCann Cumann, Tipperary

Passed

Motion 169

This Ard Fheis calls for the amendment of the Electoral Act, 1992, to allow citizens of Ireland resident outside of the state both franchise and registration as electors in Presidential, Dáil, European and local government elections:
• An amendment to Sections 7, 8, 9 and 10 of the Electoral Act, 1992 whereby the requirement for citizens of Ireland to be ‘ordinarily resident’ in the State is removed entirely from the Statute thus allowing emigrants to register to vote in Presidential, Dáil, European and Local Government elections.
• An addition to Section 14 of the aforementioned act to provide for the entry of non-resident citizens on the postal voters list.
Pending an amendment of the statute, this Ard Fheis notes the Revenue Commissioners criteria for ‘ordinary residence’ and claims that this definition be used to qualify Irish citizens to vote who are living outside the state up to the commencement of their fourth year of absence.
Mac Diarmada/Gilgunn Cumann, Leitrim

Passed

Motion 170

This Ard Fheis calls for a redrawing of local electoral boundaries to take account of community units or rural parishes being in the one LEA and that distance is a criterion in drawing up LEAs.
Peadar Clancy/Mairéad Farrell, Clare

Passed

Motion 171

This Ard Fheis calls on the party to recognise gender inequality not simply as an issue for women but also as an issue for men to address. In recognition of this we call on this Ard Fheis to endorse the UN women’s solidarity campaign ‘He for She’ and reflect this campaign in our policy making.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Using Our Natural Resources for the People

Motion 172

This Ard Fheis notes that:
• We are coming to the end of the era of cheap oil.
• Continued dependence on fossil fuels will lead to economic instability, energy insecurity and greater levels of poverty, including fuel poverty.
• The continuing environmental damage caused by the use of fossil fuels cannot continue.
• Natural resources on land, sea and air should be used for the benefit of the people of Ireland and should be used in a socially responsible way.
This Ard Fheis recognises the need to find alternative sources of energy and fuel that are renewable and environmentally sound in order that we:
• Reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.
• Find a replacement for the eventual depletion of oil.
• Become more energy independent and self-sufficient in order to attain energy security.
This Ard Fheis calls for the development of an all-Ireland Strategy for Renewable Energy that will:
• Assess all viable renewable energy sources – energy from resources that are naturally replenished within a short timescale such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves and geothermal heat.
• Promote the development of renewable energy and fuel as a means of reducing our dependency on fossil fuels and reducing levels of fuel poverty.
• Promote environmental protection.
• Promote a new economic sector in renewable energy.
• Promote community-state ownership of renewable energy sources to ensure that the benefits from energy production remain with the people and are used for the greater good of society.
• Assert the need to develop renewable energy to the advantage of the people.
• Support and promote state-community ownership of energy for the benefit of those who live on this island with a system similar to the co-operative approach taken in other countries.
In the case of wind energy, this Ard Fheis calls for this industry to be strictly regulated. We call for strict planning regulations when it comes to the development of wind farms.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Six County Cúige

Passed

Motion 173

This Ard Fheis supports the promotion of solar energy and also the regulation of large-scale solar farms to ensure that developments are in keeping with the local area and landscape.
Gerard Casey Cumann, Antrim

Passed

Motion 174

This Ard Fheis notes the development of the Templederry Community Windfarm in Co Tipperary as an example which could be followed in other areas where renewable energy developments are to be carried out.
Therefore, this Ard Fheis calls for the granting of planning permission to an applicant for the development of Renewable Energy Generation of 1MW or above to be conditional upon the applicant entering into an agreement with the local authority to allocate 6.25% of company shares in the said development for the direct funding of community facilities in the vicinity of the development and for the co-operative ownership by the local community of a life interest in the development, that being the 6.25% of shares. This 6.25% will be the minimum life interest the community co-operative can have in said development.
The allocation of said shares and any funds earned from such shares are to be held in trust by the local authority until a community co-operative can be formed for the local area. The community co-operative shall then allocate earnings from said shares to community projects and organisations in the immediate area.
All normal planning requirements are still expected and will need to be adhered to. The planning authority should ensure that the planning and design integrity of the Local Development Plan is not compromised.
Charles J Kickham Cumann, Tipperary

Passed

Motion 175

This Ard Fheis:
• Notes that the introduction of an all-Ireland Single Electricity Market (SEM) in 2007 enabled all energy generators on the island to contribute to a single energy pool.
• Believes all-Ireland harmonisation should deliver efficiencies through elimination of duplication of resources and lower energy prices to consumers.
• Believes it is essential that those involved in the SEM Committee, the Utilities Regulator in the North, and the Commission for Energy Regulation in the South, act together for the benefit of energy consumers in both jurisdictions.
• Calls for the SEM project to form part of the North-South Ministerial Council, with ministers on both sides of the Border working together to ensure that consumers receive the best deal possible.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae

Passed

Motion 176

This Ard Fheis notes:
• That EirGrid is currently reviewing the GridWest and GridLink projects with a view to undergrounding the electrical cables along at least part of these routes.
• That by excluding the North/South Interconnector project in any review, this means that the people of the Border region are effectively being treated as second-class citizens.
Calls for:
• The same consultation and engagement in the case of the North-South Interconnector project, including a detailed assessment of the project proceeding by underground cabling, as has applied in the case of the GridWest and Gridlink projects.
This Ard Fheis further calls on the incoming Ard Chomhairle, Leinster House and Northern Assembly elected representatives to:
• Oppose the introduction of the Eirgrid/NI Electricity North-South Interconnector by means of pylon-supported overhead power lines.
• Circulate quarterly reports by the respective party spokespersons, North and South, of progress towards acceptance by the respective Government ministers and Cabinet/Executive in both jurisdictions, and by Eirgrid and NI Electricity, of the need to proceed with this project only by way of underground cables.
Midlands/North-West Cúige
Monaghan Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 177

This Ard Fheis regrets the recent decision by the Electricity Supply Board to discontinue the pilot scheme which allowed householders to receive 9 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) of power produced.
This Ard Fheis calls for the formulation of policy by the party making it easier for households to sell renewable energy to the grid. This will allow people to go carbon neutral in their energy consumption by, for example, placing solar panels on their roof and selling excess energy in the summer to the grid, leaving them with a credit for winter months, thus reducing yearly bills on families. A grant system should be considered as part of this, enabling people to install such energy-saving devices. The present pricing structure, of higher tariffs for lower electricity users, flies in the face of conservation. The regulator must abandon this system and end the punishment of households who generate their own power, or are careful users of electricity.
Traolach Mac Suibhne Cumann, Cork

Passed

Motion 178

This Ard Fheis calls for a referendum to enshrine the rights of the people of Ireland to the ownership of all natural resources and to all revenues from these natural resources to be used for the betterment of the people.
Robert Emmet Cumann, Dublin
Cumann Caisleán Nua, Limerick

Passed

Motion 179

This Ard Fheis notes the December 2014 report from the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland that found Irish energy prices are rising faster than the EU average, including increases of 19 per cent and 29 per cent in household and industrial electricity prices since 2010, and condemns the absence of any Government policy to address rising fuel poverty and energy prices.
This Ard Fheis also reiterates its support for renewable energy and urges greater effort towards achieving Ireland’s binding EU target that 16 per cent of energy in Ireland should come from renewables by 2020.
This Ard Fheis accordingly welcomes the Sinn Féin submission to the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Green Paper consultation and urges the party to use this submission as the basis for the development of a comprehensive party energy policy, drawn up with the active and open participation of members.
Emmet/Clarke Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 180

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises the importance of environmental protection.
• Notes that the environment of Ireland covers the entire 32 Counties and should be reflected in policy decisions.
• Agrees that environmental concerns should be taken seriously, especially when implementing national infrastructural projects that impact on the environment and involve major disruption.
• Calls for the establishment of an All-Ireland Environmental Protection Agency that has the necessary powers to enforce environmental protection laws.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae

Passed

Motion 181

This Ard Fheis recognises that discharges into coastal waters have less stringent control than into estuarine waters and calls for our elected representatives to work towards the reversal of the designation of Lough Foyle as coastal waters.

Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

Motion 182

This Ard Fheis reaffirms its commitment to ban fracking in Ireland and recognises the impact such a development would have on our tourism and agricultural industries if permitted to go ahead.
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair
Carndonagh/Malin Cumann, Donegal
Swinford Cumann, Mayo

Passed

Motion 183

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to exercise its duty of care to the people of Ireland and to employ all possible means to prevent the construction and commissioning of any new nuclear facility, or the recommissioning of any such existing plant, along the western seaboard of the island of Britain. Also that it undertakes to not only object but to actively oppose any such development and that it gives international leadership to other smaller nations who feel equally threatened by the course being undertaken by their more powerful neighbours.
Monaghan Comhairle Ceantair
Keenan/Doherty Cumann, Monaghan
Mitchell/Sands Cumann, Monaghan

Passed

Motion 184

This Ard Fheis deplores the waste of money on the costly new postal code system which in its present design will do little if anything to facilitate the delivery of mail and risks the erosion of local townland names.
Cumann Caisleán Nua, Limerick

Passed

Rights of the Child

Motion 185

This Ard Fheis:
• Calls on the Irish Government to reaffirm its commitment to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
• Recognises the Children’s Rights Alliance criticism of Ireland for its lack of access to an adequate standard of living and the right to equality and non-discrimination for children.
• Also recognises that 10% of children in the 26 Counties continued to live in consistent poverty in 2014, which puts Ireland close to the bottom of 41 developed countries in a recent report released by UNICEF.
• Calls on the Irish Government to live up to the commitment it gave in the referendum on children’s rights in 2012, to take a child-centred approach to the protection of all children and to base child protection and social protection measures on what is in the best interests of the child.
Ireland South Cúige

Passed

Motion 186

This Ard Fheis calls for the Child and Family Agency (Tusla) to be adequately funded so that services such as Rape Crisis Centres can provide appropriate long-term counselling and support services to victims of sexual abuse. Such services should remain in local control to ensure accessibility and consistent service. Sinn Féin should make this a priority whether in Opposition or in Government. Other gender-based and family support services funded by Tusla should not endure any more cuts and should be adequately funded.
O’Malley/McEvilly Cumann, Mayo
Gleeson Cumann, Wexford

Passed

Motion 187

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to implement a strategy to properly fund community crèches that have had their capacity to maintain and develop top-class childcare services affected by cutbacks to a vital community service in our neighbourhoods that has many positive results in a real community setting.
Markievicz/O’Farrell Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 188

This Ard Fheis:
• Welcomes the anti-bullying guidelines introduced in the 26 Counties for schools and calls for them to be placed on a statutory footing and to further resource schools to implement preventative practices.
• Welcomes the legislation currently in development in the Assembly to strengthen schools policies against all types of bullying, including homophobic, religious, racial and bullying against those with disabilities.
• Calls for the development of an all-island cyber bullying strategy to help strengthen the positive progress already made.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 189

This Ard Fheis calls for a national survey on bullying and that part of that survey will call for the redefinition of the word ‘bullying’ as defined in the Oxford English Dictionary. In addition, the reporting of bullying should be made mandatory.
Hurson/Quirke Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 190

This Ard Fheis expresses grave concern at the scale and impact of cyber bullying and notes that the vast majority of the victims are young people although all users of social media are at risk.
Notes the difficulty for legislation to penetrate the core of the problem as the Internet and social media have become such a part of everyday life for many and it is virtually impossible to monitor personal messages received in a device you have in your pocket.
This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government and Northern Assembly to fund pilot projects which produce targeted campaigns, run by young people, who are paid employees, to address the issue of cyber bulling and trolling, including an optional and explicitly-stated monitoring scheme for chat forums.
Requests that young people are empowered to take the lead on this as they are the ones affected by this and the ones with the greatest knowledge of the medium.
Finally, this Ard Fheis urges everyone to look out for the signs of cyber bulling and encourage safe and responsible Internet use.
Six County Cúige

Passed

Policing and Justice

Motion 191

This Ard Fheis believes that the safety of local communities throughout Ireland will be better served through enhanced co-operation, training and planning between An Garda Síochána and the PSNI.
This Ard Fheis calls for the Cross-Border Policing Strategy, launched in 2010, to be reviewed and updated, including:
• A joint commitment, North and South, to maximise the outcomes from the strategy for local communities.
• A mechanism to capture, record and review the effectiveness of the cross-Border strategy
• Developing a joint An Garda Síochána/PSNI training and best practice strategy.
• Undertake a review to maximise the effectiveness of current arrangements relating to personnel exchanges, secondments, and lateral entry.
• Exchanging best practice on police engagement with local communities.
• Examining legislation with a view to putting forward proposals to respective departments, which would further enhance the ability of the An Garda Síochána/PSNI to work together to prevent and detect crime.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 192

This Ard Fheis endorses the Sinn Féin submission on policing reform in the 26 Counties entitled ‘A New Beginning for Policing’. While recognising that some reform has been announced by the Irish Government, this Ard Fheis believes further and deeper reforms are needed if we are to have a truly new beginning for policing in the 26 Counties and calls for the implementation of the Sinn Féin proposals in full.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae

Passed

Motion 193

This Ard Fheis believes that work of the Policing Board, the Office of the Police Ombudsman and the Criminal Justice Inspectorate is critical to the oversight and accountability of policing. The interplay between the good functioning of these bodies and developing public confidence in policing cannot be overstated. A relatively small amount of funding in terms of the criminal justice process as a whole makes a huge contribution to public confidence; it is counter-productive and short-sighted to ask these bodies to absorb significant budget cuts.
This Ard Fheis therefore calls on the Six-County Minister for Justice to protect the annual budget of these bodies, even in times of budget constraints, and to remedy the gaps in the powers of the Police Ombudsman.
Further, this Ard Fheis calls for any new Garda oversight bodies to have at least an equivalence of powers to those bodies in the North, in keeping with the provision of the Good Friday Agreement on human rights.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 26 Contae
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae

Passed

Motion 194

This Ard Fheis maintains and supports the right of the Irish people to peacefully protest. It deplores and condemns the actions of some members of An Garda Síochána in their actions against our citizens. It calls on the Garda Commissioner and the Minister for Justice to address this situation immediately and for the Garda Ombudsman to investigate all complaints received from citizens in such cases.
East Clare Cumann, Clare
Margaret Skinnider Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 195

This Ard Fheis welcomes the recent public comments by the PSNI Chief Constable on ‘Building Trust Through Policing with the Community’. We agree this concept is essential to completing the transformation of policing in the North. However, more needs to be done to ensure that the ethos and operational implications of ‘Policing with the Community’ is fully embraced at all levels within the PSNI.
We note continued and residual resistance by sections of the police towards partnership with and accountability to local communities. There is clear need for improvement in maximising acceptance of ‘Policing with the Community’ at Neighbourhood Team, Response Unit, Tactical Support Group and local Operational Management levels.
This Ard Fheis reiterates Sinn Féin’s support for the work of Policing and Community Support Partnerships, the Policing Board, and their representatives in promoting unconditional support for and acceptance of ‘Building Trust Through Policing with the Community’.
Kevin Lynch Cumann, Co Derry

Passed

Motion 196

This Ard Fheis recognises the importance of communities and police working together in a true and equal partnership and recalls the Patten recommendation that “policing with the community should be the core function of the police service and the core function of every police station”.
This Ard Fheis recognises that, in the North:
• The police service needs to be delivered in constructive and inclusive partnership with the community and with the maximum delegation of authority and responsibility.
• New partnerships between the police and local communities have been developed which would have been unthinkable 15 years ago and we need to see these rolled out in all areas.
• Community engagement – underpinned with transparency, accountability and a commitment to international human rights standards – must continue to grow and to deepen.
• ‘Policing with the Community’ needs to underpin any policing decision, whether this be a decision about policing operations, about restructuring of districts, or about how to deal with budget restraints.
• No police officer should be allowed to lose contact with the core function of ‘Policing with the Community’.
This Ard Fheis calls for:
• ‘Policing with the Community’ to be the core function of the police service and the core function of every police station.
• ‘Policing with the Community’ to be embedded in induction training and in-service training, in any performance appraisal system (including for specialist units), in any budget decisions, and in any restructuring process.
• Specific measures to ensure that the public in hard-to-reach areas, or policing ‘hotspots’ feel they have the opportunity to influence policing priorities in their neighbourhood.
• Meaningful engagement processes between the police, including Neighbourhood Policing Teams, and local community structures.
• Creation of bespoke engagement processes between young people and the police.
• Maximum consultation and transparency in the setting of district policing plan targets and the allocation of district policing resources.
• A publicly-resourced community safety strategy that facilitates meaningful engagement between the PSNI, public authorities, local councils and local communities
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Riverdale Cumann
Greater Ballymurphy Cumann

Passed

Motion 197

This Ard Fheis sends solidarity to those that have been victimised by political policing in recent times and calls for policing through political motives to come to a complete end.
Patrick Cannon Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 198

This Ard Fheis welcomes the publication in November 2014 of the ‘Stocktake Report into the 2010 Maghaberry Prison Agreement by the Independent Assessment Team’, and notes the potential which this initiative represents. We record our concern at the limited progress made to date.
We reiterate our view that full implementation of the 2010 Agreement remains the means by which all issues of contention can be resolved to ensure that all prisoners, staff and families can be treated with dignity and respect.
Sinn Féin will continue to be focused on these matters, including undertaking continued regular visits to the prison and liaising with all relevant parties, in particular the Justice Department, to ensure that the required changes to jail conditions are put into effect immediately.
Ard Chomhairle
Six-County Cúige

Passed

Motion 199

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government to facilitate the families of prisoners by moving prisoners to a prison closest to their home when requested in line with the European Convention on the Transfer of Prisoners.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Irish Government to build a new Dochas centre in Limerick Prison to alleviate the inhumane and Dickensian conditions in which women prisoners are held.
Dublin Cúige

Passed

Motion 200

This Ard Fheis commends the work of Coiste na nIarchimí in its work for political ex-prisoners and their families and reaffirms that the issues of post-imprisonment need redress as laid out in the Good Friday Agreement.
Six-County Cúige

Passed

Motion 201

This Ard Fheis calls for the restoration of library services in all prisons in the 26 Counties. Access to library services is a vital tool in the education and rehabilitation of prisoners. Depriving inmates of a library service only lessens their chances of a productive future life without crime.
O’Malley/McEvilly Cumann, Mayo

Motion 202

This Ard Fheis calls for the cultivation, sale and possession of cannabis to be legalised in Ireland.
Martin Hurson Cumann, Cork
Patrick Cannon Cumann, Dublin

Failed

Motion 203

This Ard Fheis calls for the Ard Chomhairle to create a special committee to evaluate international reforms in drug policy and the applicability of these reforms in Ireland.
John O’Reilly Cumann, Galway
West Galway Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 204

This Ard Fheis:
• Notes that drugs, both legal highs and illegal substances, are having a devastating effects on young people, communities and society as a whole and that the true scale of this problem is far from known.
• Notes that many of these substances are sold online, in person-to-person transactions and that the simple closure of so-called ‘head shops’ will not fully address this problem.
• Recognises that a blanket ban on new substances will not expose the root of the problem and will not address the reason why young people turn to psychoactive substances, illegal or legal.
• Recognises that an all-Ireland approach is the only way to treat this problem and criticises the British Government for opting out of EU legislation in this area.
This Ard Fheis:
• Calls on the Irish Government and the Assembly to empower local and community leaders to recognise the signs of drug abuse and fund targeted community programmes to help those at risk.
• Believes the societal factors underlying drug abuse and the high level of legal high usage in Ireland needs to be addressed.
• Requests that national and local government work with youth organisations to (through peer education and social media) raise awareness of the dangers of legal highs and address the root causes.
• Asks the Government, North and South, to incorporate drugs (legal and illegal) awareness into the national curriculum and with a cross-Border element.
• Encourages local government, law enforcement, medical professionals, schools and suppliers of legal highs to put forward proposals to ensure there are no more unnecessary deaths as a result from the sale of these unregulated products.
Six County Cúige
Derry City Comhairle Ceantair
North Antrim Comhairle Ceantair
Beechmount Cumann

Passed

Motion 205

This Ard Fheis notes last year’s motion of support for the Turn Off the Red Light campaign (TORL) but acknowledges increasing evidence that the Swedish model advocated by the TORL campaign does not work.
In light of research published by Queen’s University, the UN AIDS Advisory Group on HIV and Sex Work and others, this Ard Fheis continues to condemn enforced sex work and trafficking but overturns the 2013 Ard Fheis decision to endorse the Turn Off the Red Light campaign, recognising that it is advocating failed policies that put vulnerable men and women engaged in sex work at risk.
This Ard Fheis further proposes the party develops an evidence-based policy on the issue of sex work that will not make the majority of sex workers feel less safe, stigmatise them further and negatively impact service provision efforts in the area of harm reduction as research has proved in relation to the model proposed by TORL.
This Ard Fheis supports tougher sentences for those who exploit sex workers and profit from human trafficking.
This Ard Fheis calls for an approach that addresses the causes that lead to men and women engaging in sex work while promoting their health and safety
Emmet/Clarke Cumann, Dublin
Dr Andy Cooney/Jim Gleeson Cumann, Tipperary
Clifford/McCarthy Cumann, Kerry
Lawlor/Mulvihill/Clashmealcon Martyrs Cumann, Kerry

Failed

Motion 206

This Ard Fheis notes the need to address the problem of inconsistency and leniency in sentencing as an issue of significant public importance.
Sinn Féin therefore commits to establishing a programme of compulsory training for the judiciary to be undertaken before being permitted to sit as a judge.
This Ard Fheis also calls for those requested for jury duty to receive a minimum payment and be permitted to submit vouched expenses so that they are not disadvantaged by playing their part as citizens in the judicial process.

Cumann na Máighe, Donegal

Passed

An Ghaeilge

Motion 207

This Ard Fheis welcomes the publishing of the draft Acht na Gaeilge by the Sinn Féin Executive Minister of Culture, Arts and Leisure and calls for full engagement in the consultation process.
Grúpa Parlaiminteach na 6 Chontae
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 208

This Ard Fheis recognises that the Irish Government has consistently failed to adequately fund the Irish language and has reneged on numerous promises it has made on Irish-language promotion.
We therefore call on the Irish Government to put an end to its cuts policy and restore the funding lost to Foras na Gaeilge (which is around 40% in real terms since it was set up in 1999) and to make the funds available to finance the implementation of the 20-year strategy for the Irish language.
This Ard Fheis also calls on the Irish Government to honour its original decision to provide bilingual road signs with Irish and English on a par with each other and for the Minister for Regional Development in the Six Counties to explore the same issue in conjunction with their 26-County counterpart.
This Ard Fheis also call on the Irish Government to take the necessary steps to put an end to the EU derogation on Irish, thereby ensuring that proper recognition is given to the Irish language and also creating around 190 jobs.
Ard Chomhairle
Logue/Marley Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Motion 209

This Ard Fheis recognises the important contribution that the An tUltach journal made to the preservation and promotion of the Ulster dialect of our national language since it was first committed to print 91 years ago, in January 1923. An tUltach serves the ancient territories of Ulster which is made up of 10 counties – the Six Counties, Cavan, Monaghan, Donegal and Louth.
Foras na Gaeilge published an in-depth analysis of the printed and online journals/newspapers 2011 which was conducted by the respected academic Dr Regina Uí Chollatáin. While this report was critical of much of the provision at that time, the report was very clear in its recommendation that An tUlach was a very professional and essential publication which should be retained in its current format (i.e. in print).
This Ard Fheis supports the continuation of publication of An tUltach given its position as a mainstay in the evolution of Ulster Irish and its role in preserving and promoting Ulster Irish in the future.
Peadar McElvenna Cumann, Armagh

Passed

Motion 210

This Ard Fheis:
• Recognises the value of the Office of the Language Commissioner in holding public bodies to account on language policy.
• Calls for the Language Commissioner to work with other statutory agencies and the Irish language community to contribute to language strategy.
• Further calls for the Language Commissioner to be given additional powers to proactively promote the Irish language.
Ireland South Cúige

Passed

Motion 211

This Ard Fheis commends the work of Sinn Féin activists in their constant support and promotion of An Ghaeilge. In particular, we seek to highlight the sterling work and success of the following:
• An Chiste Infheistíochta Gaeilge, which is building a capital infrastructure for the Irish language throughout the North
• The ongoing endeavours of Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilín in supporting and promoting Irish by bringing forward an Irish-language strategy and drafting an Irish Language Act
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 212

This Ard Fheis asks all its members to rededicate themselves to the Líofa 2015 initiative, to encourage friends, family and other party members to sign up, and commend the more than 7,000 people who have already joined. We also call on this Ard Fheis to ask all its members to have a Líofa themed event in their areas to promote the scheme and the language.
Colin Comhairle Ceantair
Court Comhairle Ceantair
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair
Coiste Náisiúnta Óige

Passed

Motion 213

This Ard Fheis calls for Sinn Féin in government to initiate the formulation of a national bilingual strategy and that as part of any such programme ensure that state resources would be allocated to providing subsidised or, where possible, free-of-charge access to adult Irish-language classes.
This Ard Fheis also calls for Sinn Féin in government to initiate a full review of all commercial grants and other subsidies provided to Gaeltacht areas to assess what positive impact, if any, they have had on the promotion of the Irish language as the spoken language in Gaeltacht regions.
Smith/Farrell/Griffith Cumann, Dublin

Passed

Sports, Arts and Tourism

Motion 214

This Ard Fheis commits our party to developing a broad-ranging policy dedicated to developing and supporting arts organisations in Ireland. Such a policy would recognise the social and economic impact of the arts in the country and would give recognition to the arts as a very significant industry that merits support in the same way as agriculture or tourism are supported.
Hurson/Quirke Cumann, Galway

Passed

Motion 215

This Ard Fheis supports the Irish Rugby Football Union’s all-Ireland bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
Robert Emmet Cumann, Tipperary

Passed

Motion 216

This Ard Fheis calls on the GAA to continue discussions with residents around the new build at Casement Park.
Black Mountain Comhairle Ceantair

Passed

Motion 217

This Ard Fheis welcomes the positive tourist potential of the ‘Wild Atlantic Way’ and urges a continued all-island approach to tourism promotion by all tourism stakeholders.
Carndonagh/Malin Cumann, Donegal

Passed

Motion 218

This Ard Fheis calls on the Irish Government Minister for Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht Affairs to secure the necessary funding to allow for a commencement of the first phase of the physical works on the restoration of the Ulster Canal, Belturbet to Clones, to get underway in 2015.
Also that the Minister secures Government approval for the seamless continuation of works into phase two, Clones to Monaghan town, and that all parties commit to completion of the restoration project, the Erne/Shannon system link to Lough Neagh, by 2021.
Monaghan Comhairle Ceantair

Passed