ICCPR Human Rights Committee questions for Ireland

Human Rights Committee  highlights Traveller ethnicity and Roma inclusion in questions to Ireland under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The Human Rights Committee will examine  Ireland in July 2014.  In advance of this the Committee has provided a list of issues that Ireland has to provide information on, so it can assess how Ireland is meeting human rights obligations.

In August 2013, Pavee Point suggested issues to be addressed to the Country Report Task Force on Ireland for the 109th Session of the Human Rights Committee.  We made recommendations in key areas, including  Ethnic Status Recognition, Racism and Discrimination, Roma Inclusion, , Criminal Justice and Violence Against Women.

Pavee Point welcomes the list of issues that the Committee has provided and particularly the focus on recognition of Travellers and a minority ethnic group, anti-racism initatives, violence against women and Roma inclusion.

The Committee requests details about what concrete steps have been taken to recognise Travellers as an ethnic minority on the principle of self identification- and further requests details on steps taken to support nomadic and semi-nomadic ways of life.

The Committee also requests that clarification of specific measures taken to ensure the Roma community have full enjoyment of their Covenant rights, including the right to political participation and the right to be protected against arbitrary interference with family life.The  Committee  has asked for details regarding the merger of the Equality Authority and the Human Rights Commission into the new Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission. They also request followup on the National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism and the Combat Poverty Agency, both of which were abolished. The Committee Report also requests details about a successor to the National Action Plan Against Racism, 2005-2008.

The Committee have specifically asked questions regarding violence against women and complaints from Traveller, migrant, asylum seeking and refugee women. It also requests that information be provided on measures taken to ensure that women in dating relationships and cohabitants have equal access with regard to barring orders. The Report highlights the need that non citizens with a status linked to their partner are able to leave situations of domestic violence.

At this time, Pavee Point is looking forward to hearing the response of Government on these issues.