First Step Toward More Equitable Ireland Achieved
The Equality Budgeting Campaign, a group of over 30 civil society organisations, has responded to yesterday’s vote on the Equal Status (Amendment) Bill 2013. The bill, which was tabled by Sinn Féin, would have placed a positive duty on all public bodies to ensure equality of opportunity. It would have added new equality categories to existing equality legislation, and would have introduced mandatory impact assessments on budgetary measures.
Spokesperson for the campaign, Dr. Clara Fischer, said that “the campaign was delighted to have the support of Sinn Féin, Fianna Fáil, United Left Alliance, all Independent TDs, and former Labour Party members for this bill. Although the government voted against it, we feel very strongly that this is a turning point in our campaign.”
“We are disappointed that Labour, in particular, have voted against equality-proofing, and thereby against their own official party policy. However, the campaign for increased equality in Ireland continues, and has been given a vital boost by yesterday’s vote. To have the issue of equality and impact assessments, particularly in relation to the budget, discussed in our national parliament is a significant achievement. We look forward to working further with our supporters to make equality budgeting a reality in Ireland.”
Equality Budgeting Campaign
Further information on the bill:
The Equal Status (Amendment) Bill 2013 was tabled by Sinn Féin on Tuesday, 2nd July, as a Private Members Bill. The bill was defeated by the government, with 89 votes against 46. SF, FF, ULA, Independents and former Labour Party members voted in support of the bill.
About the Equality Budgeting Campaign:
The Equality Budgeting Campaign is a broad-based coalition of NGOs, trade unions and concerned individuals seeking the introduction of equality budgeting in Ireland. Members include the National Women’s Council of Ireland, the Irish Feminist Network, SIPTU, SPARK (Single Parents Acting for the Rights of Kids), Campaign for Labour Policies, and Union of Students in Ireland. The campaign was set up in light of research showing increased levels of inequality in Ireland and the disproportionate disadvantaging of certain sections of Irish society by successive governments since the beginning of the economic crisis.
Further information on equality budgeting available from here:
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