Labour will adopt a welcoming New Irish policy, to celebrate Ireland's new diversity and to ensure that everyone has equal rights. Being a member of Irish society is not about being born in Ireland or parentage or formal citizenship, but about choosing to make a long-term commitment to life in Ireland. Labour will fight racism and xenophobia.
Labour will maintain a zero-tolerance stance on racism and xenophobia, including anti-Traveller prejudice. All of our candidates and elected representatives will be required to uphold the highest standards, not just of respect for diversity but active anti-racism.
Labour will introduce a welcoming New Irish policy, similar to Scotland’s New Scots policy.
Labour will make hate crime illegal, such as racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia. The Gardai will be tasked with keeping accurate statistics on hate crime, as is done in Northern Ireland.
Labour will introduce new safeguards to protect young people from abuse and discrimination, including online. Labour will continue to press for its Harassment and Harmful Communications Bill 2017 (“Coco’s Law”) to be enacted, to update the law to include harassment and bullying on the Internet, mobile phones and social media. We will also introduce adequate regulation and enforcement of online platforms to ensure that harmful content intended to promote suicide, self-harm and eating-disorders, and other related material, is promptly removed.
Labour will restore the right to citizenship to children raised in Ireland and whose primary affiliation is to Ireland. At present, many children brought up in Ireland do not have an automatic right to citizenship because their parents are not Irish citizens, even though they have never known another home. This can cause serious problems for them after school, such as an inability to go to college, to work or to travel. This legal change can be made under existing provisions in the Constitution, despite the 27th Amendment.
Labour will regularise undocumented children, young people and adult workers, including migrants fleeing domestic violence who are reliant on their partner’s residency status. Labour will support those brought into Ireland by human traffickers, not least those traumatised by the experience of forced prostitution.
Labour will introduce a single system of fees for citizenship, ending the higher fees charged to those without Irish ancestors.
Labour will progressively abolish the current system of Direct Provision and move responsibility for accommodating asylum seekers to the Department of Rural and Community Affairs. We will phase out for-profit provision of accommodation. Smaller scale tenders will be issued to approved housing bodies, and community consultation and support will be improved. Working rights for asylum seekers will be improved.