Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Welcomes Recommendation of Sinéad Gibney as Chief Commissioner

The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (‘the Commission’) has today welcomed Government approval for Sinéad Gibney to be proposed for appointment to the role of Chief Commissioner.

The announcement comes after Sinead’s selection through an open and transparent competition by the Public Appointment Service (PAS).

As set out under the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014 – once the PAS selection process is completed, Commission members must be approved through resolutions of both Houses of the Oireachtas. Commission Members are then formally appointed by President Michael D. Higgins.

In August 2019, the Commission wrote to the Minister for Justice and Equality to emphasise that upcoming appointments to the Commission should be carried out in line with international standards for an open and transparent selection and appointment process, and in line with the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014. The Commission holds the highest possible ‘A’ status accreditation under the United Nations mechanism of accreditation for such institutions – the Paris Principles, underlining its institutional independence, domestic and international standing.

Professor Caroline Fennell, Acting Chief Commissioner welcomed today’s announcement:

“Sinéad Gibney brings significant experience and expertise to the Commission, and to the role of Chief Commissioner. As our second Chief Commissioner Sinéad Gibney will, once appointed, play a pivotal role in our work to build a just and inclusive society that protects and promotes human rights and equality in Ireland.

 “On behalf of the Commission I would like to pay particular tribute to the Commission’s first Chief Commissioner Emily Logan who steered the Commission from its 2014 establishment, and who oversaw the growth of the Commission’s work and reputation as an authoritative, independent body focused on tackling human rights and equality issues in the State.”

ENDS/

For further information, please contact:

Brian Dawson, IHREC Communications Manager,

01 8589601 / 087 0697095

bdawson@ihrec.ie

Visit our website www.ihrec.ie or follow us on twitter and Instagram @_IHREC

Note to Editor 

The open competition for seven Commission Members of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is still underway. This process and is being run entirely by the Public Appointment Service (PAS) and all queries should be directed to PAS in relation to this.

The Commission currently holds the Chair of the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI) representing national human rights institutions from across 46 out of 47 Council of Europe Member States (Italy does not have such a body).

The UN Paris Principles constitute a set of internationally recognised standards to assess the independence and effectiveness of national human rights institutions. Included in these standards, is an inclusive and transparent selection and appointment process.

The ECRI General Policy Recommendation No. 2 states that persons holding leadership positions in equality bodies should be selected and appointed by transparent, competency-based and participatory procedures.

The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission

The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is Ireland’s national human rights institution and is recognised as such by the United Nations. The Commission is also Ireland’s national equality body for the purpose of a range of EU anti-discrimination measures. The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014, Article 12 sets out the Membership of Commission, while Article 13 sets out Appointment of members of Commission.

 

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