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Government must move to ratify OPCAT – Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

28 June, 2018 - by Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire has called on the Government and Minister Flanagan to move to ratify OPCAT as soon as possible.

Teachta Ó Laoghaire said;

“The Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture designed to prevent torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment in all places of detention.

“OPCAT recognises the central importance of inspection as a way of preventing human rights violations. These inspections create transparency and accountability, which in turn act as a deterrent against future cruel treatment.

“Given this State’s history of treatment of people in detention, it is incumbent on us as legislators to do all within our power to ensure past injustices are not repeated.

“The Government of the day signed OPCAT in the Autumn of 2007, one year after the scandal of Leas Cross Nursing Home emerged where elderly residents were subjected to degrading treatment.

“It’s nearly 11 years ago that we committed to OPCATs ratification yet we’ve still not done so.

“Its ratification would be a statement of intent from this government that they act in the best interests of those in nursing home, residential care centres, and direction provision centres to name a few.

“The Government must move to ratify OPCAT as soon as possible, and I hope that will be done between now and the resumption of the Dáil in September.”

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