Wednesday 18 September 2019

'Restorative justice' model for FF review on Travellers

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Philip Ryan

Philip Ryan

Fianna Fáil's examination of the party's Traveller policy will follow a "restorative justice" model, according to the TD chairing the review.

Party equality spokesperson Fiona O'Loughlin said settled people and Travellers should both accept there have been shortcomings in the debate around the recently recognised ethnic community.

Ms O'Loughlin was tasked with reviewing the party's policy on Travellers after a robust internal Fianna Fáil debate.

During the meeting she said there should be a "restorative justice" style review of the country's relationship with Travellers which would see acceptance of blame from both sides.

Yesterday, she said every member of the parliamentary party will be asked for their views as will Traveller advocacy groups.

The review will look at a range of issues faced by Travellers such as high levels of unemployment and suicide.

Ms O'Loughlin said it was time to "learn lessons" from the past and have an "honest debate" about the community.

"We need to develop a culture of respect between settled people and Travellers, and we need to listen to both sides of the debate," she told the Irish Independent.

"If integration doesn't work then we should look at other ways which will allow both settled and Traveller communities to live in harmony," she added.

Irish Independent

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