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National Women’s Council call on government to take action against racism

Published: Friday, February 17, 2023

The National Women’s Council (NWC) has said government must act to tackle the growing wave of racist violence facing the country, including by publishing and acting on the long-overdue National Action Plan on Racism. The call comes as NWC asks women to join the march for solidarity and inclusion planned for Saturday in Dublin.

NWC Head of Campaigns Rachel Coyle said:

“As women, it’s really important that we come out in solidarity with women fleeing situations of war and poverty. We have to take a stand against the misogyny and racism inherent in large groups  targeting women, children, and men in their homes and in Direct Provision. We have to make sure that women of all backgrounds and ethnicities feel safe on our streets.”

The government’s last action plan on racism lapsed in 2020 and it’s now clear that the delay in formulating a new one has had devastating consequences. NWC is calling on government to step up and tackle racism and to meet Ireland’s obligations to people who come to Ireland seeking protection.

Ms Coyle continued:

“It’s not just about accommodation, it’s about trauma-informed support for women fleeing war and violence. It's about vulnerability assessments, protection from trafficking, and gender-sensitive accommodation. Instead of meeting those legal obligations, we have the spectre of people becoming homeless on arrival to Ireland.”

Ms Coyle will address the rally on Saturday, as part of a lineup of speakers from across the political spectrum. She is due to say that women have a right to be angry – at the lack of housing, healthcare and education services, at the lack of refuge spaces for women fleeing domestic violence, and at the spiralling cost of living. But, she will also tell the crowd, the target for that anger is not people who need protection. She will call for people to respond with compassion and kindness, and for their elected representatives to do the same.


For comment: Rachel Coyle

For more information, please contact Sinéad Nolan, NWC Communications and Social Media Coordinator - sineadn@nwci.ie

What: Le Chéile Solidarity march

When: Saturday 18 February, 1:30pm

Where: Parnell Square to Custom House Quay


About NWC

The National Women’s Council is the leading national representative organisation for women and women’s groups in Ireland, founded in 1973. We have over 190 member groups and a large and growing community of individual supporters.

This year we celebrate 50 years since our foundation with a special calendar of events and campaigns.

The ambition of the National Women’s Council is an Ireland where every woman enjoys true equality and no woman is left behind. This ambition shapes and informs our work, and, with our living values, how we work.

We are a movement-building organisation rooted in our membership, working on the whole island of Ireland. We are also part of the international movement to protect and advance women’s and girls’ rights. Our purpose is to lead action for the achievement of women’s and girls’ equality through mobilising, influencing, and building solidarity. Find out more on www.nwci.ie