Policy and Engagement

Human rights are provided for at three levels: international, regional and domestic. The Policy and Engagement team engages internationally at the level of the United Nations and at a regional level with the Council of Europe and the European Union, producing parallel reports that measure the progress of the Irish Government against international treaty standards.

The Policy and Engagement team also co-ordinates the Commission’s work with three important international networks: GANHRI, the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, ENNHRI, the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions and Equinet, the European Network of Equality Bodies.

The Commission keeps under review the adequacy and effectiveness of law and practice relating to the protection of human rights and equality in Ireland. The Policy and Engagement team examines draft legislation for human rights and equality compliance and makes recommendations to Government in relation to measures to strengthen, protect and uphold human rights and equality.

The Policy and Engagement team also promotes public understanding and support of human rights and equality through its communications campaigns, public engagement and public relations activities. A significant programme of work is underway in developing guidance and pilot projects with public bodies on implementing the new Public Sector Duty contained in section 42 of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014. This includes a one-year part-time Professional Diploma in Human Rights and Equality accredited by University College Dublin.

Ruth Gallagher is Head of the Policy and Engagement team