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United Nations Universal Periodic Review should call out human rights failures of Government

12 May, 2016 - by Martina Anderson MEP, Liadh Ní Riada MEP, Matt Carthy MEP, Senator Lynn Boylan

The Irish government should react immediately to the UN's Universal Periodic Review and work to enhance human rights provision in Ireland.

Martina Anderson MEP for the six counties and Vice-Chair of the Inter-parliamentary Group on Disability, said

"On March 30th 2007, Ireland signed, but did not ratify, the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD). Since then, the CRPD has been ratified by 156 countries and Ireland remains one of just two EU member states yet to do so.

"Recognising that vulnerable members of society are further marginalised by their disability, efforts should be redoubled to accommodate fully the provision of rights and services for all people, including stateless people, refugees and asylum seekers.

Matt Carthy MEP for Midlands North West added,

"In 2013 the Council of Europe warned that Ireland needed to take action on discrimination against the Travelling community – and that Travellers need to be recognized as an ethnic minority.

"However, the failure of the state to recognise the ethnicity of Travellers and to provide the necessary protections in law has contributed to the appalling and shameful evictions of Travellers, as families with nowhere to go are forced to park illegally."

Lynn Boylan, Dublin MEP commented,

“Opinion poll after opinion poll has shown that the majority of Irish people believe the 8th amendment to be overly restrictive and that as a nation we cannot continue to ignore this matter.

“The 8th Amendment puts the lives of Irish women at risk and leaves medical practitioners in a very difficult position."

Liadh Ní Riada, Ireland South MEP and member of the Culture and Education Committee remarked,

"In 2011, the UPR recommended Ireland eliminate discrimination in schools on religious grounds. Last year my party colleague Jonathan O'Brien TD brought forward the Equality in Education Bill in the Dail, which would have repealed the legislative provision that allows religious ethos schools discriminate against children of different faiths and none.

"It is indefensible that in this day and age we have a structure in place that allows for religious discrimination against four year olds.

"Ireland may have been the first country to approve same-sex marriage by popular vote, but the Government still has a lot of work to do in order to avoid continuously violating the human rights of the Irish people." ENDS

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