My parade June 26, 2011Posted by Tomboktu in back at the Seanad, Education, Gender Issues, Human Rights, Inequality, Ireland, Ministers.
[re-posted from the comments at Wordlbystorm's suggestion]
I walked in the Dublin parade yesterday, walking for part of it with LGBT Pavee, and part of it with another group I am a member of.
Four unsettled issues I noticed at the parade.
(1) The Grand Marshal this year was Michael Barron, CEO of BeLonG To Youth Services. One of the key issues BeLonG To works on is homophobic bullying. It is six years after the first research report funded by the Department of Education showed there is a major problem in Irish second-level schools. [Quiz: what percentage of teachers reported they witnessed incidents of homophobic bullying in the term before the study occurred? Was it
And six years on, Minister Ruairí Quinn has announced he is considering (note: only ‘considering’) setting up a working group to come up with a road map. Not one school inspection has examined the issue in that six years.
(2) LGBT Noise and Marriage Equality were there, with a reminder from LGBT Noise that a less celebratory and more political march is to occur in August. (I love the line in one of their placards: “Jesus had 2 dads and he tuned out fine”.)
[I don't know if it is the settings on my machine or a characteristic of WordPress, but the image below is cropped when I look at it. I have made a link to the source so you can see the full image.]
(3) The three teachers’ unions were there, and Maman Poulet points out that Ruairí Quinn took the opportunity to be photographed with them. She, in turn, uses that opportunity to ask him what he is doing about section 37(1) of the Employment Equality Act, which allows lesbian, gay and bisexual teachers to be discriminated against by the overwhelming bulk of Irish schools.
(4) During the week, TENI, Transgender Equality Network Ireland, marked the first anniversary of the decision of the Government to withdraw its Supreme Court appeal in the case taken by Lydia Foy to have her true gender legally recognised. It has been eighteen years — longer than the Birmingham Six spent in jail — since she first asked for that right. Three days later, TENI got news that Minister Joan Burton has received the report of the Gender Recognition Advisory Group. There was some support for TENI. FLAC published a press release, and Katherine Zappone raised the issue and the delay in the Seanad.
Answer to the multiple choice quiz: (a).