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Ó Snodaigh gives cautious welcome to racism report but warns against complacency

31 October, 2006

Sinn Féin’s Equality Spokesperson, Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh, has given a cautious welcome to a new report showing a drop in racist attitudes and incidents in Ireland over the past three years.

Speaking about the report commissioned by the National Action Plan Against Racism, the Dublin South Central TD said,

“Today’s IMS Millward Brown report states that 15% of respondents, both immigrants and non-immigrants, have experienced racism, compared to 18% in 2003.   It also finds that attitudes towards immigrants have improved over the same period. 

“If the report is accurate then it is obviously welcome.  But these statistics will come as little comfort to those members of immigrant and ethnic minority communities in Ireland, including Travellers, who continue to experience racism on a regular basis.  I would be concerned that part of the apparent drop may be due to under-reporting of incidents.

“It is important that this report does not become an excuse for complacency.  15% of respondents experiencing racism is still 15% too many.  One racist incident is one incident too many.

“Only when racism is eliminated from Irish society will we truly have cause to celebrate and Sinn Féin are committed to working to make that happen.”  ENDS

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