Over 120 young people assisting the Commission in assessing Ireland’s performance against UN Obligations on Racial Discrimination
The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (“The Commission”) is today hosting an event bringing together more than 120 young people from across Ireland to collect their experiences and ideas towards eliminating all forms of racial discrimination.
The Commission, in its role as Ireland’s national human rights and equality institution, together with the National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI), is bringing together people aged 16 – 24, from a diverse range of backgrounds, communities and experiences to discuss how they view racism and intercultural understanding in Ireland.
The event “Be Heard: Ending Racial Discrimination in Ireland” will hear from young people including those living in direct provision, members of the Traveller and Roma Communities and a diverse mix of ethnic minority and immigrant communities.
Views collected on the day will contribute to the Commission’s independent reporting to the UN in November on Ireland’s obligations under the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD).
Emily Logan, Chief Commissioner of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission stated today:
“The young people here today have seen more change in Irish society then any previous generation. They have unique experiences and rich perspectives to bring to our understanding of what actions are needed to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination in Ireland.
“Coming from a range of backgrounds, these young people already have significant experience in overcoming obstacles in education and work, in challenging attitudes and breaking down stereotypes, and in showing first-hand the strength that comes from intercultural understanding.
“Today’s contributions will support the Commission in our independent work at the UN, of scrutinising Ireland’s work to date on eliminating all forms of racial discrimination and in signposting what further work needs to be done.”
Farah El Neihum, a young person attending the consultation said:
“I’m looking forward to having an open conversation about the very real issues of everyday life for those of us who are from a minority ethnic group and who have experienced this type of otherness. The voice of young people is vital for change to happen and for our country to be more progressive, educated and compassionate. We are also sharing the power this way, and putting it in the hands of future generations, which is really exciting.”
Mary Cunningham, Director of the NYCI said:
“Today’s event is so important, as we are hearing directly about the lived experience from those most impacted and most motivated to do something about it – our young people. The National Youth Council of Ireland is proud to be working with the Commission in hosting an event that puts diverse young people front and centre, to ensure their voice is heard.”
For further information, please contact:
Brian Dawson, IHREC Communications Manager,
01 8589601 / 087 0697095
Follow us on twitter and Instagram @_IHREC
Notes to editor:
PLEASE NOTE: Photos will be issued to your photo desk by 11am on Saturday featuring Chief Commissioner Emily Logan, young performers and young people taking part in this event.
The United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) is an international human rights treaty explicitly devoted to the elimination of racial discrimination. Ireland ratified CERD in 2000, and was last examined in 2011.
CERD sets out what governments must do to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination, including to:
- adopt all necessary measures to speedily eliminate racial discrimination in all its forms
- prevent and combat racist doctrines and practices
- combat racial prejudice through teaching, education, culture and information
- take positive action to guarantee the right of everyone without distinction as to race, colour, or national or ethnic origin, to equality before the law
Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission
The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is an independent public body, appointed by the President and directly accountable to the Oireachtas. The Commission has a statutory remit set out under the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act (2014) to protect and promote human rights and equality in Ireland, and build a culture of respect for human rights, equality and intercultural understanding in the State.
The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is Ireland’s national human rights institution and is recognised as such by the United Nations. The Commission is also Ireland’s national equality body for the purpose of a range of EU anti-discrimination measures.
National Youth Council of Ireland
The National Youth Council of Ireland is a membership-led umbrella organisation that represents and supports the interests of voluntary youth organisations working with over 380,000 young people each year. It uses its collective experience to act on issues that impact on young people.