Equality In Education Alliance Hold Darwin Day Information Meeting For Candidates

Equality in Education Alliance supported by the Humanist Association of Ireland (HAI) will hold an Information Meeting for election candidates to coincide with Darwin Day. It will be held in TCD, hosted by the Students Union, February 12 at 12:00. Contributions will be made by all the main players in the present campaign to resolve equality of access, the subject of recent media and Dáil attention.

The event will also advise which candidates have made a public commitment to equality in education, and those who have not. The event title is “Educating Ireland Equally”.

Organiser Roopesh Panicker said: “Equality in education must be an election issue, and needs full public debate. Ireland’s record in the treatment of children is poor, and our website VoteForEquality.ie will allow us to name and shame those who won’t defend the rights of children, and advise our members not to vote for them. But first, we must educate candidates.”

Ireland fails it’s human rights obligations, and is accused internationally, of discrimination. The UN Commission on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) has urged Ireland – again – to “Expeditiously undertake measures to amend existing [legislation] to eliminate discrimination in school admissions, including the Equal Status Act”. That’s a very significant finding.”

Organiser Fachtna Roe added: “The stated aim of the Alliance is to draw domestic attention to Ireland’s embarrassing record on the treatment of religious minorities in the publicly-funded education system, and to cause change. It’s apt to do this on Darwin Day.”

Candidates may not know the true facts of the problem, hence Friday’s Information Meeting. It’s purpose is to place on the public record the fact that there is no Constitutional basis for the present discriminatory practices, as operated by the CPSMA in National Schools. The first of the presentations might be the most significant, and will be given by the Irish National Schools Trust. They will explain the forgotten back-story of Ireland’s National School system. They will explain how our education system has been hijacked. The meeting will also be addressed by HAI, Education Equality, EQUATE, and Citizens to Separate Church and State.”

Our politicians must understand that Ireland’s contravention of Articles 18 and 26 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights is an election issue. We acknowledge that as the election has been called, not every candidate will be able to attend. But there can be no excuse for not giving the mere 6 clicks required to indicate their position. Ireland practices Educational Apartheid, so 6 mouse-clicks isn’t too much to ask for.”

We have communicated directly with every TD, senator, and candidate, and given each a fair chance to state their position. Our database is live and on-line at VoteForEquality.ieto allow voters to judge the fundamental sense of right and wrong of the people seeking their vote. Voting for pro-discrimination candidates is to destroy the spirit in which our State began.”

This Information Meeting will show that all that’s required to solve these issues is political will. Reminding politicians that non-religious minorities have votes too will help with that.”

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