Commitment to Progress a Number of Traveller and Roma Human Rights Issues Welcomed by Traveller and Roma Organisations

In November 2021 Ireland’s human rights situation was peer reviewed by the United Nations Member States during the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Ireland. Ireland has now considered all of the recommendations issued during the Review, and in its response has accepted 221 recommendations and noted 33 recommendations.

Our Coalition of Traveller and Roma organisations have engaged in the UPR of Ireland process and welcome the fact that our State has made a clear commitment to implement a number of actions to address the human rights situation of  Travellers and Roma in Ireland.

The  State has committed to step up its efforts in relation to eliminating racism and discrimination, including against Travellers and Roma. The forthcoming National Action Plan against Racism and legislation to combat hate speech and crime – if fully implemented- will play key roles in their elimination in the coming years. 

However, we regret that despite calls to introduce legislation to prohibit racial profiling by An Garda Síochána, the State has not made a commitment to do this. With a number of Travellers and Roma reporting being subjected to racial profiling and discrimination by members of An Garda Síochána, it is obvious that the anti-discrimination policies and the availability of an individual complaints mechanism via Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission have not provided a solution to these incidences.

Under the European Union Roma Strategic Framework 2020-2030 and a number of recommendations arising from the UPR process, the State has made a commitment to develop and implement Ireland’s second National Traveller and Roma Inclusion Strategy, and to set and achieve clear targets, outcomes and other crucial metrics in order for the Strategy to have a positive and concrete outcome for Travellers and Roma in Ireland.

While our reaction to Ireland’s UPR outcome is positive, we realise that the implementation of the recommendations will require political will, clear leadership, cross departmental collaboration, and those all-important resources. We need this commitment to transfer into real and concrete positive outcomes for members of our communities – to make this happen our organisations continue to be available to support the State in implementing these recommendations.

Ireland’s Report will be formally adopted during the 49th Session of the Human Rights Council on 23 March.

The report of United Nation Human Rights Council Human Rights UPR Working Group on the outcome of Ireland’s most recent review (and all UPR recommendations) available here

The State’s response to the Report is available here.

The submission by our coalition of Traveller and Roma organisations to the 39th Session of the UPR Working Group can be accessed here.

Pavee Point Traveller  & Roma Centre

National Traveller Women’s Forum

Minceirs Whiden, Traveller Only Forum

Donegal Traveller Project

Galway Traveller Movement