Fair Ireland Forum at NUI Galway Launch Dialogue Series with Inaugural Event

Thursday, 6 May 2010

The Human Rights of Children and Families: Prevention, Intervention and Support in Times of Crisis
NUI Galway will host the first event in a dialogue series for 2010, organised by the Fair Ireland Forum, on the topic of 'The Human Rights of Children and Families: prevention, intervention and support in times of crisis'. The event will take place on Tuesday, 11 May at 7pm, in the Bank of Ireland Theatre at Áras na Mac Léinn, NUI Galway. The dialogue will be between Professor Pat Dolan, UNESCO Chairholder of Children, Youth and Civic Engagement, and Fiona Neary, Director of Rape Crisis Network Ireland The topic of this dialogue is one of great significance in light of the proposed Children's Rights Referendum, which would create a constitutional framework for the rights of children. There have been calls for the Government to set a date for the referendum. Continuing revelations of child abuse within the family home and reports of a recent increase in domestic violence also pose threats to human rights. The response of government, policy makers and support workers to these challenges, and how they create and implement prevention and intervention strategies and provide for survivors of abuse and neglect, particularly in times of economic recession, will impact generations of Irish citizens and residents. Fiona Neary and Professor Dolan bring a combined experience of over 35 years of scholarship, support and frontline work in defending the rights of children, adolescents and women and will discuss the opportunities and challenges of protecting and supporting children and families in times of crisis. Fergal Landy, a researcher at the Child and Family Research Centre at NUI Galway, said: "This event and the Fair Ireland Forum initiative is a contribution to the national conversation about the current challenges we face and the type of society we want to have, now and in the future. We are delighted to launch this series of events with a dialogue between two eminent individuals who have demonstrated leadership skills in their respective fields and we welcome all the people of Galway to come to the University and to participate fully in the event and future events". The Fair Ireland Forum is an initiative of members of the NUI Galway academic community that aims to create space for the University and the wider community to participate in and make concrete contributions to public debates on the current challenges facing Ireland – grounded in principles of fairness, social inclusion, democratic governance, accountability and respect for human rights. The 2010 Dialogue series will deal with topics of immediate and critical concern to Ireland featuring a host of distinguished academics and members of civil society. The inaugural discussion will be facilitated by Dr Lionel Pilkington of the School of Humanities, NUI Galway, and is free and open to the public. There will be a public discussion/question- and-answer period following the dialogue. Further information can be attained by contacting stacy.furlong@nuigalway.ie or visiting the website, www.fairirelandforum.org.
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