PRESS STATEMENT: Minister- Get Rid of Discriminatory Enrolment Policies

Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre
Press Statement

February 24th 2015

Minister: Get Rid of Discriminatory Enrolment Policies

Speaking today following the Supreme Court dismissal in the case of Stokes v High School Clonmel, Pavee Point Director Martin Collins highlighted the ongoing and endemic discrimination created by enrolment policies in Ireland.

“This outcome effectively legalises indirect discrimination and will only serve to condemn another generation of Travellers to poverty, unemployment and social exclusion.”

“There is no doubt that policies like this are obstacles to accessing education. These barriers are intolerable for children and have particularly negative impacts on the Traveller community, new communities and relocating families.”

Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre has been advocating for the legislative removal of such policies through the Education (Admissions to School) Bill 2013 and have appealed to the Minister for Education, Jan O Sullivan TD, to prevent the continued use of such policies.

“We are hopeful that the Minister for Education can see from the Stokes case that these policies inhibit equality and prevent freedom of access to education. They are negatively impacting hundreds of families. It’s needless- these policies need to be stopped now.”

“Now that all national remedies have been considered, perhaps it is time for the European Court of Human Rights to be consulted. All children, regardless of their ethnicity, should have full, equal and open access to education.”