Some French Posters against The World Cup in Argentina 1978 April 15, 2013Posted by irishelectionliterature in Human Rights, International Politics.
Some French Posters against The World Cup in Argentina 1978. The first one translates ‘roughly’ as “…..when you applaud the French team , cheers cover the sounds of people being tortured…”
I was 8 going on 9 at the time and wasn’t that aware of the Human Rights issues in Argentina back then. Looking now at the squads of the various teams its striking to see how few players played their trade abroad compared to nowadays.
Strangely I loved that Argentina team that won it, especially Mario Kempes (my sons middle name is ‘Kempes’).
Anyway powerful posters
GCN is 25 years old March 3, 2013Posted by Tomboktu in Community, Gay Community News, Gender Issues, History, Human Rights, Inequality, LGBT Rights, media, Media and Journalism.
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Interview with Jerry Buttimer of Fine Gael… February 23, 2013Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture, Economy, Human Rights, Irish Politics.
…in the Mail conducted by Jason O’Toole. It’s a very interesting interview not least for the fact that Buttimer remains Fine Gael’s only openly gay TD.
O’Toole notes that:
It was a heartbreaking phone call from a distraught mother that made up Jerry Buttimer’s mind. The woman, whose gay son was being taunted over his sexuality, had heard a rumour that the Cork South Central TD was also gay and desperately wanted him to meet with her son and advise him. After talking to the young man, 46-year-old Buttimer made the brave decision to become the first ever Fine Gael TD to publicly come out as being homosexual. ‘The young man was distressed to such an extent that he was on the verge of suicide,’ Buttimer says. ‘He was feeling under pressure, he had no one to talk to. He felt alienated. I told him he was not alone, that he was not the only person to feel under such pressure. I stressed that there was great facilities to help him and that there was a superb network within the gay community to support him on his journey. ‘After being able to talk about it, he has now bounced back and is very positive.’
Ireland breaches European human rights laws on workers rights January 30, 2013Posted by Tomboktu in Employment Rights, Human Rights, Workers Rights.
Ireland has been found to be in breach of eight European requirements on employment rights (pdf here). A total of 11 breaches of the Revised European Social Charter were itemised by the Council of Europe in legal findings published on Tuesday (29 January). The Charter is a sister human rights treaty to the European Convention on Human Rights (pdf).
The findings were made by the European Committee of Social Rights, an independent legal body set up to judge state’s conformity with the Charter.
In addition to finding that Ireland is breaching European human rights law, the Council of Europe watchdog indicates that it doubts that the State is properly implementing its legal duty to strive for full employment, and echoes an OECD report that Ireland’s performance on assisting people with job searches in ineffective. The Committee took note of the OECD’s findings that a quarter of people eligible for help from FÁS were never referred to it and that Irish spending on labour market policies relies on job creation schemes that have been judged to be ineffective. However, the Committee decided to defer coming to a legal finding of compliance or breach until the Government provides more information.
The Employment Equality Act was found to to be incompatible with the human rights standard because the maximum compensation that can be awarded is not sufficiently dissuasive and may not be enough to make good the loss a person suffers. The law was changed in 2011 to raise the amount to €40,000. Only the provisions on gender discrimination, where the upper limit does not apply, are found to meet the standard required.
Most of the shortcomings highlighted in the legal report concern the rights of non-EU workers. Ireland has been found to discriminate illegally against those workers in relation to their access to vocatonal training, their access to vocational guidance, the length of their residency requirements for access to higher education, and their access to further or continuing education.
Fees levied by Ireland for work permits were found to be excessive. At the time the Committee assessed the situation, they ranged from €500 to €2,250 (in the case of a person renewing a permit for five years).
A rule requiring both Irish and non-Irish people to be resident in a local authority area for a year before they are eligible for a maintenance grant for vocational training was also found to be a breach of the European Social Charter.
Ireland was also found that the rights of all newly employed workers — both Irish and non-Irish — is breached because they are not protected under the Unfair Dismissal Acts in their first full year in any employment. “The Committee considers that one year period of exclusion is manifestly unreasonable”, the report says. It also finds that excluding workers who have reached the normal retiring age from the protection of the Unfair Dismissals Act goes beyond what is permitted in European human rights law.
The European Committee of Social Rights also finds that employment rights of army officers is breached. Officers may not seek early termination of their commission unless they repay to the state at least part of the cost of their education and training, and the decision to grant early retirement is left to the discretion of the Minister of Defence. The human rights watchdog find that this could lead to a period of service which would be too long to be compatible with the freedom to choose and leave an occupation.
The Committee found Ireland to be in conformity with six provisions, and deferred reaching a conclusion in the case of six other provisions because the Government had not provided enough information to enable the Committee to assess if the State is meeting its obligations.
The findings were made in the annual reporting procedure under the Revised European Social Charter. A quarter of the 31 articles of the Charter are examined each year, in thematic clusters. The next report will examine Ireland’s situation in relation to health, social security and social protection.
Ireland ratified the Charter thirteen years ago. Unlike the European Convention on Human Rights, the European Social Charter does not provide individual redress, but collective complaints from trade unions, employers’ bodies and European NGOs can be heard by the European Committee of Social Rights.
“I do not have to prove that I am ‘trans enough’ for anyone” December 7, 2012Posted by Tomboktu in Crazed nonsense..., Human Rights, Inequality, Irish Politics, Justice, LGBT Rights.
While the country was getting ready for the budget on Wednesday, elsewhere in the Leinster House complex, an Oireachtas committee took evidence on the experience and legal situation of trans people in Ireland.
All of it is worth watching, but I was particularly moved by the evidence of Darrn matthews, from 8:30 into the film:
Hi. My name is Darrin Matthews. I am a board member of TENI and also run he Cork Peer Trans Support Group.
I am a transgender man.
I had a woman from the Disability Allowance Office ring me and she wanted to know why my name had changed from a female name to a male name, and when I told her it was because I was transgender, she laughed at me and hung up the phone.
When I go out and I get asked for my passport as identification to get in, I sometimes get turned away because my gender marker still says “F” and I have both my birth certificate name and my current name Darrin printed.
Everybody has a right to a private life. I would just like that my right would be recognized. Issuing new birth certificates and can easily do this and prevent embarrassment and harassment and potentially dangerous situations.
My experience of being transgender doesn’t just affect me, it also affects my family. I have an amazingly supportive and loving family. My mother put herself into almost €12,000 worth of debt so she could send me to a private school because I was bullied for 2 years in my state school. My mother took out a loan to send me to a school where I could be called Darrin, not wear a girl’s uniform and be happy and every member of staff and every student called me Darrin instead of derogatory and cruel names.
I have many friends who are straight, gay and transgender. In this day and age if a gay friend of mine come to me and told me they had gotten their official diagnosis of “homosexual”, I would be shocked and appalled. Nineteen years ago homosexuality was decriminalized and people now cannot imagine a time when homosexuality was illegal. Most people don’t know that transgender people must be diagnosed with a psychiatric illness to access treatment in this country because this is such an inconceivable and ridiculous notion and is discriminatory in its nature.
I do not feel that because I was born in the wrong body that that automatically means I have a mental illness. There is still stigmatization attached to having a mental health issue in this country and to force a psychiatric condition onto another human being can have detrimental effects on a person’s self-image and self-esteem.
When a couple applies for a civil partnership, they are not asked for their gay diagnosis to prove their homosexuality. I had to prove to many people I was happier as the man I should have always been, to my mother, my siblings, to my friends. And I had to prove that I had a psychiatric illness. But I should not have to prove anything to a complete stranger and seek their acceptance. I do not have to prove that I am ‘trans enough’ for anyone.
My mother once asked if I was sure, and if I was really sure that being Darrin was what I wanted. When I told her I couldn’t go go back and be happy, she just said to me ‘Well then we can only go forward, my son’.
I always knew transitioning would never be easy but please don’t make it any harder than it already is. All I want is to be treated as an equal. To be treated with respect and dignity as much as a non-transgender person would be. Nothing more and nothing less. Thank you.
Three extracts that puzzle… December 4, 2012Posted by Tomboktu in Human Rights, Ministers.
The first extract is of the Ombudsman for Children, Emily Logan, on 17 October 2012 on RTÉ Radio Radio 1, following the publication of the report of the Inspector of Prisons, Judge Michael Reilly, on the treatment of of young people in St Patrick’s Institution:
Ombudsman for Children: When I went in in 2009 to meet with the young people, we heard over a period of three months their views and their experience much of which is in this report. In fact Judge Reilly indicates that the issues raised were raised by young people with me, and we published that last year. To be perfectly frank people were sneering at the outcome of that report largely–
Interviewer [interrupting]: When you say that people were sneering: who?
Ombudsman for Children: I publicly commented last year at my annual report that I was very disappointed that people at a very senior level in the Department of Justice, right up to the Secretary General, sat in front of a UN committee and told that UN committee that this was about children’s perception and that really dampened down the notion that any of these kinds of things that were happening, or were real, because of the people that were reporting it.
Ombudsman for Children: Last year I was, I suppose, patronised somewhat, and made fun of, if you like, and was made to feel I was being naive in thinking that what the young people were saying was true.
The second extract is of the then Secretary General of the Department of Justice and Equality, Sean Aylward, replying to questions from the UN Committee against Torture, in Geneva, 24 May 2011 :
Secretary General, Department of Justice: Ombudsman for Children’s Office: Involvement with St Patrick’s. In the longer paper which you have we refer to a report which was prepared by the independent Ombudsman for Children, Emily Logan on St Patrick’s Institution on the 9th of February 2011. That report documents the views of a selection of offenders and its purpose is to highlight rather than verify their perceptions. In doing so, the rpoert identifies a number of discrepancies between the young people’s perception and the actual reality.
The third extract is from the Written answer to two Parliamentary Questions, 11 January 2012.
606 Billy Timmins asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the procedure adopted in respect of the recent appointment of Ireland’s representative to the Council of Europe Committee for the Prevention of Torture; if he is satisfied with the appointment as made, having due regard to appropriate and accepted protocols and convention; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40928/11]
612 Stephen Donnelly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality with regard to the recent appointment of new members of the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture, the instruction he gave to the Irish ambassador attending at the Committee of Ministers that voted on new members; if the ambassador was given any instruction to contribute to debate on the Irish candidates; and if so, the instructions; if the ambassador was given any instruction to vote on the Irish candidate; if so, the instruction; and if any representation was made to other voting members of that committee in favour of any of the Irish candidates. [41011/11]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I propose to take Questions Nos. 606 and 612 together.
For the first time in this State, expressions of interest were sought through public advertisement in August from suitably qualified and experienced persons for nomination as Ireland’s representative to the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT). Advertisements were placed on the websites of my Department and the Public Appointments Service with the criteria for selection having regard to the requirements of the CPT for nomination.
Forty-eight expressions of interest were received. In line with the procedures for nomination to the CPT, three individuals had to be selected as the Irish nominees. The three nominees listed below were chosen in the light of the experience, expertise and characteristics identified by the Council of Europe as being relevant for membership of the CPT.
Dr Mary Rogan, Lecturer Dublin Institute of Technology, Chairperson of the Irish Penal Reform Trust;
Mr Seán Aylward, a former Director General of the Irish Prison Service and Secretary General of my Department; and
Mr Donncha O’Connell, Lecturer in Law, National University of Ireland, Galway.
The Council of Europe is satisfied with the selection process used for the nomination and commented favourably on it. I gave instructions that no particular preference should be shown for any of the three candidates. The nominees were not put forward for consideration in any order of preference, and to the best of my knowledge Ireland expressed no preference for any particular candidate and abstained from the voting at the Committee of Minister’s Deputies meeting in Strasbourg on 7 December, 2011 which appointed Ireland’s representative on the CPT. It is a matter for the Council of Europe to decide which nominees should be appointed to the CPT.
The State’s position on the rights in the kind of situation before Savita Halappanava’s death November 17, 2012Posted by Tomboktu in Bunreacht na hÉireann, Ethics, Feminism, Health, Human Rights, Ireland, Medical Issues.
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Here is what the government says is the official procedure to be followed in the kind of situation that preceeded Savita Halappanava’s death, as explained by the Government to the European Court of Human Rights in 2009, and summarised by that Court in September 2010. [I have added the emphasis. Here they are dicussing the case of "C".]
189. As regards the third applicant specifically, the Government made the following submissions.
In the first place, they maintained in response to a question from the Court, that the procedure for obtaining a lawful abortion in Ireland was clear. The decision was made, like any other major medical matter, by a patient in consultation with her doctor. On the rare occasion there was a possibility of a risk to the life of a woman, there was “a very clear and bright line rule provided by Irish law which is neither difficult to understand or to apply because it is the same law that has been applied under Section 58 of the 1861 Act, under Article 40.3.3 of the Irish Constitution and under the legislative provisions of every country which permits a pregnancy to be terminated on that ground”. As to the precise procedures to be followed by a pregnant woman and her doctor where an issue arose as to such a possible risk, it was the responsibility of the doctor and a termination could occur when the risk was real and substantial. If the patient did not agree with that advice, she was free to seek another medical opinion and, in the last resort, she could make an emergency application to the High Court (as outlined above). The grounds for lawful abortion in Ireland were well known and applied. Referring to the Medical Council Guidelines, the CPA Guidelines and the evidence of practitioners to the Committee on the Constitution, the Government considered it clear that, while there were issues regarding the characterisation of medical treatment essential to protect the life of the mother, medical intervention occurred when a mother’s life was threatened, the refusal of treatment on grounds of moral disapproval was prohibited and a patient was entitled to a second opinion. While the Irish Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists had no published guidelines concerning a pregnant woman presenting with life threatening conditions, that Institute would be in agreement with the Guidelines of the United Kingdom Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists concerning the management of ectopic pregnancies and it was probable that Irish gynaecologists would “by and large” follow the latter Guidelines with or without minor amendments or additions. This clear process of how a decision to terminate a pregnancy was taken in Ireland by the patient in consultation with the doctor was regularly followed in the case of ectopic pregnancies./blockquote>
[You may wish to know that Ireland was found by the European Court of Human Rights to have breached the human rights of "C".]
The 90-page PDF is available here.
Declaration of the 4th European Transgender Council September 9, 2012Posted by Tomboktu in Gender Issues, Human Rights, Inequality, Ireland, LGBT Rights.
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I received this in an email today.
Declaration of the 4th European Transgender Council on transphobic and racist violence and harassment, targeted at three Council participants
We the participants and organizers of this 4th European Transgender Council condemn the transphobic attack directed towards three participants of our Council in Dublin – two of the newly elected steering committee members and a Council of Europe official. Two years ago delegates were attacked during the 3rd European Transgender Council in Malmö (Sweden). We are shocked and deeply concerned that this type of violence has been repeated in Ireland. Once again it has been proven that no space is a safe space for trans people.
On Saturday night, 8th September 2012, a group of ten delegates were on their way to the Council’s social events in the Temple Bar District. Two persons, unknown to them, targeted our Turkish Steering Committee member, Kemal Ördek, and physically and verbally attacked hir and hirs colleague Laura LePrince from France. Lauri Sivonen, Advisor to the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, intervened to protect the delegates and the attackers spat in his face before leaving the scene. Due to the fact that their first target was one of our Turkish delegates, we assume that the attack was not only based on trans- and homophobia, but as well on racism and xenophobia.
Lauri Sivonen, accompanied by a representative of TENI, reported the incident on Saturday night to An Garda Síochána. Kemal Ördek and Laura LePrince will give a report at the garda station as well. The gardai are expected to ensure that the delegates will have a chance to report in a safer space with respect to their gender identity and expression. TGEU has been assured that TENI will observe and follow up on the process.
In view of the above,
We require An Garda Síochána to
Investigate this case quickly, properly and without any trans-, homo- or xenophobic or racist prejudice. Implement a trans-inclusive monitoring system that will effectively record transphobic incidences. Have LGBT trained liaison officers on duty 24 hours. Collaborate with TENI to make Dublin and Ireland a safer space for trans people.
We demand that the State of Ireland
Ensure that gender identity and gender expression are explicitly covered by equality legislation and work to develop hate crime legislation that protects all trans people. Collaborate with Irish trans organizations and support their work to make Ireland a country that does not tolerate bigotry, discrimination or violence against trans people. Raise awareness that trans people’s equality and human rights must always be respected thus making sure that such incidents cease to happen. Protect trans people’s private life through gender recognition legislation that fully respect human rights according to the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe’s Recommendations and the Yogyakarta Principles.
Dublin, 9th September 2012.