Equality and Fairness
Labour Party Manifesto 2020

Labour Councillors in local government have always used their powers to advance equality and fairness. Labour will push local councils to meet their public sector duty to eliminate discrimination, promote equality and protect human rights in their daily work.

Decency, equality and justice are made real whenever local government ensures everyone is securely housed and when every neighbourhood is a good place to live, to raise children and to grow older.

The Labour Party fully stands behind the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. These goals include eliminating poverty, hunger and inequality.We will make sure they are all included in councils’ long-term strategies, budgets, performance indicators and reports

The powers of local government must be used to improve the lives of people in the most disadvantaged areas

  • Local Councils need to publish statistics on poverty, deprivation, unemployment, disability, age profile and the number of households on low fixed incomes as part of their annual reports and strategies

At all levels of local and national government, Labour has always been the strongest advocate for greater gender equality

  • It is time for local councils to adopt gender budgeting practices in their annual budget processes
  • Labour TDs and Senators will push for statutory quotas for more equal representation of both women and men as candidates for election at local level
  • Local councils should be leaders when it comes to reporting on gender pay gaps. We will call for each council to publish statistics on its own workforce in terms of the gender of employees at every grade, the gender pay gap, the employment of ethnic minorities, the employment of people with disabilities, and the employment of people from other minorities
  • We’ll seek a greater proportion of women to be employed at management level in local government
  • Labour councillors will continue to advocate for local councils to show leadership by actively encouraging breastfeeding by mothers in all their premises
  • Labour councillors have been leading the charge when it comes to convincing local councils to provide free sanitary products in their buildings. In the next council term, we will continue this work
  • It is critical that every local council has adequate provision of refuge accommodation to support people, mostly women and children, fleeing domestic violence
  • We will make sure that that local councils show flexibility and sensitivity towards victims of domestic violence (some of whom may have tenancies or joint ownership of a home) so that they are not barred from local council housing and then forced to choose between homelessness and returning to an abusive home

Support families and children

  • Children and families must have access to community-based arts and cultural activities
  • Local Councils should support schools to provide meals at lunchtime. This will ensure that every disadvantaged child has a hot nutritious meal every school day

Support LGBT+ communities

  • We will continue to support LGBT+ Parades held in local areas and ensure that their routes are visible
  • We will ensure that more local councils are LGBT+ friendly places to work or use services, and use the leadership role of local government to combat discrimination or bullying

Support Ireland’s ethnic minority communities

  • Local councils should reach out more to new communities, through information and education initiatives, in order to foster social inclusion and intercultural understanding
  • We will make sure the necessary support is there for people from minority communities to hold festivals and other events celebrating their culture and traditions, and support access to public buildings for community activities
  • We’ll collaborate with local communities to support the successful integration of refugees
  • We will encourage local councils to use their enterprise role to support shops and other businesses set up by people from ethnic minorities
  • It’s important for a greater number of ethnic minorities, including Travellers, to be employed by local councils, and we’ll push councils to work with Travellers to ensure better job opportunities
  • We will demand all funds for Traveller housing are drawn down and used at local level

Support people with disabilities

  • We will demand that all new local council policies, developments and services are disability proofed, meaning that the effects on people with disabilities should be clearly identified and given due consideration during the planning phases
  • We’ll seek safe and unimpeded access for people with disabilities on all footpaths and to all public buildings, and we’ll advocate for a greater number of people with disabilities to be employed by local councils