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Government should mark Traveller Focus Week by recognising their distinct ethnicity – Ó Snodaigh

2 December, 2008 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD


Speaking in the Dáil today Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Justice, Equality and Human Rights Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD called on the Government to mark Traveller Focus Week by reversing its policy of non recognition of travellers as a distinct ethnic group.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said the Government's current policy limits the protections available to Travellers under national, European and International law.

He said, "The government should mark this years Traveller Focus Week by reversing its policy of refusal to recognise the Traveller community as a distinct ethnic group because travellers continue to experience significant discrimination.

"The refusal to officially recognise their ethnicity limits the protections available to travellers under national, European and International law and denies Travellers protection for their cultural rights and access to basic services.

"This is evidenced, for example, by the failures of local authorities to provide transient accommodation and the disproportionately poor health outcomes amongst the community." ENDS

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