Human Rights and Equality Update - Issue 1 2019
Welcome to the newsletter of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
Issue 1 2019
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In this issue of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission newsletter, we bring you the latest news from the Commission, together with useful resources and information on significant human rights and equality issues in Ireland.

In this issue:

For more information on our work visit or follow the Commission on twitter @_IHREC


New Disability Advisory Committee Begins its Work

CRPD Disability Advisory Committee 

This week, eleven people were formally appointed by the Commission to serve on the first ever statutory advisory committee in Ireland to support monitoring of Ireland’s implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

The Disability Advisory Committee, made up of a majority of people with disabilities has been brought together by the Commission to support its statutory function of monitoring Ireland’s implementation of the UN Convention.

The CRPD was ratified in March 2018, more than a decade after being first signed by Ireland, and is now in force. Ireland is expected to produce its first report to the United Nations in Geneva on its implementation of the Convention in 2020. Article 33 of the Convention requires an independent mechanism to monitor the implementation, a role which will be fulfilled by the Commission. Full details of the Disability Advisory Committee and individual biographies are available here

Members of the Disability Advisory Committee

Related Media
Irish Examiner
Commission media release


Oireachtas Committee told of “Significant Gaps” in Human Rights and Equality Protections under Withdrawal Agreement


Last week, the Joint Committee of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission and the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, established under the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement, addressed the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice and Equality.

The Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice and Equality invited Emily Logan, Chief Commissioner of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission, and Les Allamby, Chief Commissioner of the Northern Ireland Human Rights to appear. The two Chief Commissioners pointed to significant gaps which remain in the protection of human rights and equality under the proposed UK Withdrawal Agreement:  

  1. The actual extent of protections provided by the UK Government’s “no diminution of rights” commitment 
  2. The UK’s decision to no longer be bound by the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights 
  3. The legal basis for the Common Travel Area (CTA) 
  4. The rights of citizens 
  5. Justice arrangements to be agreed 
  6. Possible future divergence on rights protections 
  7. Strength of the dedicated mechanism

Joint Committee on Justice and Equality debate - Rights and Equality in the Context of Brexit
Policy statement on the United Kingdom withdrawal from the European Union
Related Media
Belfast Telegraph article
ITV News article
Irish Independent article
Irish Times article 
Commission media release


Commission Warns of Threat to Active Civil Society from Current Legislation

The Commission has stated that Ireland must avoid undue restrictions on civil society organisations engaging in legitimate advocacy.

The Commission set out its recommendations to Government and Oireachtas members in its role as Ireland’s National Human Rights and Equality body, in light of concerns that application of the 1997 Electoral Act (as amended) may be having a chilling effect on the funding and activities of civil society organisations involved in legitimate advocacy.

In its policy statement, the Commission set out the need for a review of the Electoral Acts to consider how the State ensures an enabling legal framework and a conducive political and public environment for civil society.

Policy Statement of the Electoral Acts and Civil Society Space in Ireland

Related Media
RTÉ Radio News at One interview
Irish Times editorial
Irish Times article
Irish Examiner article
Commission media release

Human Rights and Equality Grants 2018 Announced

  Application Form 2018

The Commission recently announced the 25 organisations awarded a total of €350,000 in funding for projects under its Human Rights and Equality Grants Scheme 2018.

In awarding the 2018 grants the Commission focused on two overarching themes, in line with its strategic focus: Intercultural understanding and diversity and Supporting implementation of the Public Sector Equality and Human Rights Duty.

The grant awards include support for research, education and training on human rights and equality, activities for promoting the integration of migrants and other minorities, equality including gender equality, and respect for diversity and cultural difference.

Now in its third year, the Human Rights and Equality Grants Scheme 2018 was open to Irish based groups working to further human rights and equality in communities and nationally, including local groups, civil society groups, and public bodies.

Human Rights and Equality Grant Awardees 2018
Related Media
Commission Media Release


New Research Sets Out Experiences of Racial Discrimination in the Labour Market

Ethnicity and Nationality in the Irish Labour Market_Page_01 
New research published has shown that Black non-Irish people are five times more likely to experience discrimination when seeking employment in Ireland when compared to White Irish people. Black non-Irish people are over two and a half times more likely to experience discrimination when in employment compared to White Irish people.

The research published by the Commission and the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) examines the experience of immigrants and minority ethnic groups in the Irish labour market across four measures: employment rates; occupation; discrimination when seeking work and in the workplace.

The study entitled “Ethnicity and Nationality in the Irish Labour Market” looks at Central Statistics Office (CSO) data to capture how labour market outcomes and the experience of discrimination have changed through economic boom, recession and early recovery.

Ethnicity and Nationality in the Labour Market report

Related Media
The Times (ROI) article
Irish Examiner article
RTÉ article
The Journal article
Commission media release


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