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Oireachtas members join call for publication of wording for the upcoming equality referendum

Published: Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Former Committee Chair, Ivana Bacik TD, and members of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Gender Equality today (Wednesday, 27th September 2023) joined five civil society organisations outside Leinster House to call for the publication of the wording for the upcoming equality referendum in line with the recommendations of the Joint Oireachtas Committee Report. The five organsiations included the National Women’s Council (NWC), Treoir, One Family, Family Carers Ireland and SIPTU.  

Orla O’Connor, Director, National Women’s Council said, 

“We welcome the greater clarity provided by Government in relation to the timeline of this referendum which is now scheduled to take place in early 2024. We are now calling on the Government to publish the wording without delay so that the public has the time and space to consider the proposals that they will be asked to vote on.  

The referendum is our chance to lead a national conversation on the values and principles that we want to see shape our shared future and policies. It is a historic opportunity to remove limits on women’s role from the Constitution and instead enshrine the value of care in all of its forms, inside the home and in the wider community.   

Valuing care is about ensuring everyone is supported to participate in our community. People who provide care, both in paid and unpaid roles, must be able to do so with dignity and with the proper support and resources. And people who may need care must have access and choice when it comes to the supports they need to live their lives independently.”  

Damien Peelo, Treoir said, 

“We all know that family is much broader than just legal or biological relationships. When we talk about family we're talking about love, care, and the relationships between people. Today, Ireland's family life is increasingly diverse. The number of children born outside of marriage is rising, with 43% registered in 2022.  

The upcoming referendum is our chance to reflect this reality of family life in our Constitution and recognize all family types equally, including but not limited to the family based on marriage. 

All families, including the ones with children in them, need recognition, support, and protection by our Constitution. We are calling on the Government to publish the wording for the upcoming equality referendum without further delay.” 


For more information, please contact Silke Paasche, Head of Communications, NWC, Tel. 085 858 9104.  

Notes to Editor 

What: Photocall with coalition of civil society organisations and the Chair and Members of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Gender Equality  

When: Wednesday, 27th September 2023, 10 am 

Where: Outside the gates of Leinster House