10 July 2012
Government’s convention ignores key human rights, says Amnesty International Ireland
'It’s a disappointing start to a process that had promised real, fundamental, reform'
AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL IRELAND has accused Fine Gael and Labour of putting pre-election commitments to protect health and housing rights "at the back of the queue" in the programme for the Government’s Constitutional Convention.
Polling carried out by Red C for Amnesty earlier in the year found that 78% of those asked agreed that the convention should look at how the Constitution could protect the right to adequate housing; 81% agreed it should examine the right to equal access to healthcare.
Amnesty International Ireland Executive Director Colm O’Gorman said:
“The Programme for Government promised the convention would present an opportunity for citizens to have an active role in delivering a Constitution fit for the 21st century. But the Government has ignored calls from opposition parties, civil society and 80% of the Irish people to use the convention to examine how the Constitution could protect health and housing rights in Ireland.
“This is despite the fact that both Government parties had previously supported legislation to amend the Constitution to include these rights.”
Colm O’Gorman added:
“The resolution being brought forward today only allows for the convention to consider other constitutional amendments once the Government’s current list of issues is complete. Why, once again, are the human rights of people living in Ireland placed at the back of the queue?
“It’s a disappointing start to a process that had promised real, fundamental, reform.”
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