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Written Answers — Employment Rights: Employment Rights (18 Jan 2011)

Mary White: The Director of the Equality Tribunal has received legal advice to the effect that the Tribunal cannot consider claims where a company has been dissolved. The advice of the Attorney General on the matter has been sought.

Written Answers — Departmental Expenditure: Departmental Expenditure (14 Dec 2010)

Mary White: The Deputy will be aware that the Traveller Policy Division became part of my Department in June 2010. Prior to this, the Division formed part of the then Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. Funding for the Traveller Policy Division forms part of the Equality Monitoring/Consultative Committees subhead. The portion of this subhead allocated to the Traveller Policy Division for the...

Written Answers — Equality Issues: Equality Issues (14 Dec 2010)

Mary White: Funding of the order of €16.249m will be made available to support measures relating to equality and diversity during 2011. Among the key priorities for my Department will be the continuation of the vital work done by equality and human rights agencies, and the support of important integration and diversity management initiatives throughout the country. While some reductions are necessary,...

Written Answers — Community Development: Community Development (14 Dec 2010)

Mary White: As I indicated in my reply to Question No 91 on 3 Samhain 2010, the establishment of the Ministerial Council on Integration is one of the initiatives outlined in the policy statement - Migration Nation: Statement on Integration Strategy and Diversity Management - and is part of progressing work on immigrant integration policy in Ireland. The Cabinet Committee on Social Inclusion, Children...

Written Answers — EU Directives: EU Directives (30 Nov 2010)

Mary White: I propose to take Questions Nos. 300 and 301 together. In relation to the Deputy's questions on maternity leave, I will draw his attention to my response to Question No. 359 of 23 November 2010. The European Parliament also initiated the proposal to amend the European Commission's draft Directive further by introducing paid paternity leave in the course of its consideration of the Maternity...

Written Answers — EU Directives: EU Directives (23 Nov 2010)

Mary White: In 2008 the European Commission published proposals to amend the 1992 Maternity Leave Directive by extending the period of maternity leave from 14 to 18 weeks. The Commission did not propose any change to the payment regime during this proposed period of maternity leave. The period in question is below the current Irish provision of 26 weeks and, accordingly, the Commission proposal did not...

Written Answers — Community Development: Community Development (3 Nov 2010)

Mary White: The Equality for Women Measure 2008-2013 provides targeted opportunities for women in employment, training, entrepreneurship and decision-making, using ESF and Exchequer funding. To date, two phases of the Measure have been advertised extensively, inviting applications from a wide range of service providers, including community-based not-for-profit groups, recognised training bodies, State...

Written Answers — Constitutional Amendments: Constitutional Amendments (3 Nov 2010)

Mary White: The language in Article 41.2 of the Constitution has been criticised by the Committee which reviews the implementation of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. It has also been reviewed by the Constitution Review Group and the All-Party Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution, each of which proposed new formulations to replace the existing...

Written Answers — Departmental Agencies: Departmental Agencies (3 Nov 2010)

Mary White: I have not had any communication with the European Parliament Committee on Petitions in this regard.

Written Answers — Community Development: Community Development (3 Nov 2010)

Mary White: I have established a Ministerial Council on Integration to provide a forum where migrants can speak directly to me regarding their experiences of integration in Ireland and thereby promote better-informed policymaking by identifying any issues and bringing them to attention. The establishment of the Council is one of the initiatives outlined in the policy statement - Migration Nation:...

Written Answers — Equality Issues: Equality Issues (12 Oct 2010)

Mary White: The Equality for Women Measure (EWM) is a positive action measure to promote equality of opportunity for women, supported by the European Social Fund. The total amount of funding identified for the Measure over the period 2008-2014 is about €11.5 million, of which half is being contributed by the ESF. Following the initial application phase in 2008, 36 not-for-profit groups received...

Written Answers — Immigration Issues: Immigration Issues (7 Oct 2010)

Mary White: A request for a meeting was received. As the matters raised in this case relate to immigration, the person in question was advised that the matter was more appropriate to the Minister for Justice and Law Reform.

Written Answers — Paternity Leave: Paternity Leave (6 Oct 2010)

Mary White: There is currently no statutory provision for paternity leave. My Department, in consultation with the social partners, is examining the issue of paternity leave as part of a review of maternity, parental and paternity leave as promised in the Social Partnership agreement "Towards 2016". The issue of the introduction of a statutory entitlement to paternity leave was examined before, in...

Written Answers — Traveller Community: Traveller Community (30 Sep 2010)

Mary White: My Department got involved in the process referred to by the Deputy as part of its remit in relation to mediation within the Traveller community. The Traveller policy division of my Department received a telephone call from the Pavee Point Mediation Service on 20 May 2010 regarding an ongoing conflict between two Traveller families. Pavee Point Mediation Service expressed concern that a...

Written Answers — State Bodies: State Bodies (1 Jul 2010)

Mary White: Tenders were sought on 11 June for the production of three background papers on the better integration of equality, human rights and social inclusion policy formulation and implementation, to identify issues that will need to be addressed in the review. Tenders are to be submitted by 5 July on the public procurement portal, eTenders. This scoping exercise is the first step in the review. No...

Written Answers — Migrant Integration: Migrant Integration (1 Jul 2010)

Mary White: The Equality, Integration, Disability and Human Rights (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 2010 (S.I. No. 217 of 2010) provides that the functions vested in the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform in relation to the promotion of the integration of persons (other than protection applicants) who are not, or who previously were not, Irish citizens,...

Written Answers — Equality Issues: Equality Issues (1 Jul 2010)

Mary White: My priorities for my Department's equality brief over the coming year include the following: · Carry out a review of the legislation, structures and arrangements involving the Equality Authority, the Equality Tribunal and the Irish Human Rights Commission in order to enhance equality in an effective way; · Oversee implementation of the National Women's Strategy 2007 - 2016, including o the...

Written Answers — Departmental Reviews: Departmental Reviews (16 Jun 2010)

Mary White: I have commenced work on a review of the legislation, structures and arrangements involving the Equality Authority, the Equality Tribunal and the Irish Human Rights Commission in order to enhance equality in an effective way. As part of this process, a scoping exercise has been initiated on the better integration of equality, human rights and social inclusion policy formulation and...

Written Answers — Legislative Programme: Legislative Programme (3 Jun 2010)

Mary White: Section 6 of the Disability Act 2005 requires a review of the operation of the Act to be carried out not later than five years after its commencement. The review is underway at present.

Written Answers — International Agreements: International Agreements (3 Jun 2010)

Mary White: It is the Government's intention to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as quickly as possible, taking into account the need to ensure that all necessary legislative and administrative requirements under the Convention are being met. Work on what is involved by way of implementation of the various provisions in the Convention, which are extensive,...

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