Dáil debates

Wednesday, 18 May 2022

Ceisteanna - Questions

Cabinet Committees

1:52 pm

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I propose to take Questions Nos. 17 to 20, inclusive, together.

The Cabinet committee on social affairs and equality oversees implementation of the programme for Government commitments in the areas of social policy, including sport, equality, arts and culture, as well as children and youth affairs and public services, including matters relating to justice, policing reform and community safety. These commitments and other matters include poverty and disadvantage; examining area-based initiatives to build stronger communities; progress to a living wage over the lifetime of the Government; addressing food poverty in children and ensuring no child goes hungry; expanding the Dublin north-east inner-city model to comparable areas experiencing disadvantage; introducing a scheme to regularise undocumented migrants, which was announced last December and is currently open for applications; advancing proposals to deal effectively with the issue of domestic, sexual and gender-based violence through a third national strategy; ending the direct provision system and replacing it with a new international protection accommodation policy; extending paid parental leave, allowing parents to spend more time with their baby during his or her first year; establishing Childcare Ireland to assist the sector in delivering high-quality childcare; legislating to require publication of the gender pay gap in large companies; responding to the recommendations of the Citizens' Assembly on Gender Equality; publishing a new national action plan against racism; progressing implementation of A Policing Service for our Future, including more visible community policing; introducing a new policing and community safety Bill to redefine the functions of An Garda Síochána; and introducing hate crime legislation.

The Cabinet committee last met on 19 May and will meet again in the coming weeks. I have regular engagements with Ministers at Cabinet and individually to discuss priority issues relating to their Departments. In addition, a number of meetings have been held between my officials and officials from relevant Departments on various social policy issues since the establishment of the Cabinet committee in July 2020.

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