All 2007

Top US Human Rights Lawyer to address issue of Capital Punishment

Top US Human Rights Lawyer to address issue of Capital Punishment-image

Tuesday, 30 January 2007

30 January 2007 The Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway is pleased to announce a seminar by leading human rights lawyer Bryan A. Stevenson on Tuesday, 6 February, at 1.00pm at the centre in Earls' Island. Mr Stevenson, who represents disadvantaged people and death row prisoners in America, is in Ireland as part of a week-long nationwide tour in conjunction with Amnesty International. Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, Professor William Schabas welcomed Mr Stevenson to Galway, describing him as "one of the most iconic figures in the US campaign against capital punishment." "Bryan Stevenson is one of the pre-eminent lawyers in the United States whose work is devoted to challenging the death penalty," said Prof. Schabas. "His work takes on heroic proportions, as he battles to defend those subject to execution at trial and in post-conviction proceedings. His visit to the Irish Centre for Human Rights gives us an occasion to reaffirm our own, and Ireland s, opposition to capital punishment. He is also a fabulous role model for young human rights activists contemplating careers in the field. For some people, meeting Bryan Stevenson and hearing him speak will transform their lives." Prof. Schabas will speak alongside Mr Stevenson at a public session in the Galway City Library, St Augustine Street, later on Tuesday evening. A Professor of Law at New York University and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama, Mr Stevenson and his staff have been successful in overturning dozens of capital murder cases and death sentences where disadvantaged people have been unconstitutionally convicted or sentenced. He has been recognised as one of the top public interest lawyers in the US and his efforts to confront bias against the poor and people of colour in the criminal justice system have earned him dozens of awards. A spokesperson for Amnesty International, which campaigns for an end to executions and the abolition of the death penalty everywhere, said; "The death penalty is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment - it violates the right to life. It is irrevocable, can be inflicted on the innocent and has never been shown to deter crime more effectively than other punishments. Progress has been dramatic. In 1977, only 16 countries had abolished the death penalty for all crimes. Today the figure stands at 88." Mr Stevenson will visit Limerick, Galway, Cork and Dublin as part of the Amnesty International tour. -ENDS- For further information please contact Jacqueline Hogge, Press Office, NUI GalwayTel: 00353 91493361

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New Sean-nós Singer-in-Residence at Centre for Irish Studies

New Sean-nós Singer-in-Residence at Centre for Irish Studies-image

Monday, 29 January 2007

The Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway has announced the appointment of Micheál Ó Cuaig to the position of Sean-Nós Singer in Residence for the current year. A native of Cill Chiaráin, Micheál qualified as a primary school teacher in 1970 and was principal of Scoil Naomh Ciarán for sixteen years before his retirement last year. Throughout his teaching career, he organised classes and workshops in sean-nós singing for his pupils. Having fallen under the spell of Joe Heaney at a young age, he has organised an annual festival, Féile Joe Éinniú, which celebrates Heaney's legacy, for the past fifteen years. In order to further commemorate Heaney's contribution to Irish music, Micheál recently presented a copy of the Joe Heaney Archive held at Washington University, Seattle to NUI Galway and that material is now located at Áras Shorcha Ní Ghuairim in Carna. Micheál Ó Cuaig is also the author of two highly regarded collections of poetry in Irish Uchtóga (1985) and Clocha Reatha (1986) which critics have applauded for their emotional delicacy and scrupulous use of language. He is married to Mairéad Ní Chonghaile and they have seven children. During the period of his residency, Micheál will participate in a series of performances and workshops at the Centre for Irish Studies and other venues throughout Connemara and the Aran Islands. He will also record his own work and that of other singers. The workshops at the Centre for Irish Studies will commence at 7.00pm on Tuesday 13 February . This project is funded by Ealaín na Gaeltachta, Údarás na Gaeltachta and An Chomhairle Ealaíon in association with the Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway. For further details, contact Samantha Williams: Tel: 091 49 2051; email: samantha.williams@nuigalway.ie ENDS

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New Guide on General Practice Care for Asylum Seekers and Refugees

New Guide on General Practice Care for Asylum Seekers and Refugees-image

Monday, 29 January 2007

Doctors in Galway are to benefit from a new guide on treating asylum seekers and refugees compiled by the HSE, NUI Galway and the Galway Refugee Support Group. The forty-five page 'Information Pack for GPs in Galway on General Practice Care for Asylum Seekers and Refugees', offers information on the broad range of health needs of asylum seekers and refugees, and a comprehensive list of local support organizations and services. The document also provides relevant information on issues such as women's health, male circumcision, torture, communicable disease assessment and immunisation. GPs will also have a template and guide for completing medico-legal reports used in the asylum determination process in supporting a history of physical or mental abuse or torture. If it proves successful, the guide may be adapted for use nationally. The guide was launched by Priya Prendergast, Local Health Manager HSE West, at a recent conference in Galway, entitled 'Participation of Ethnic Minority Communities in Primary Care Service Design, Planning and Delivery'. Its author, Dr Hans-Olaf Pieper is a Fellow in Asylum Seeker and Refugee Healthcare, a position funded by HSE Western Area Primary Care Department in partnership with the Department of General Practice, NUI Galway and the Galway Refugee Support Group. Speaking at the launch Priya Prendergast said: "This document provides a wealth of useful information and templates for specialist services. It also provides contact details of support organisations and useful templates for specialist services. By providing brief, practical and useful information, GPs will find this a useful tool for caring for asylum seekers and refugees. We will be interested in finding out how Galway GPs find and use the guide". Dr. Pieper has worked extensively with asylum seekers and refugees as a General Practitioner. "GPs need more support in their care for asylum seekers and refugees who present a broad range of health needs requiring specific specialist skills and information," he said. "There is support out there for doctors in the form of translation agencies and support organisations but often we are not aware. This new guide will bring this information to the doctors' fingertips". It is envisaged to update the guide regularly and, if it proves to be successful, to encourage adapting the guide to local needs in other parts of the country with a view of disseminating it nationally as an example of good practice. It is planned to evaluate the use of the guide at a later stage of 2007. Further information can be obtained from Dr Hans-Olaf Pieper on ho.pieper@nuigalway.ie ENDS

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Micheál Ó Cuaig ceaptha mar Amhránaí Cónaitheach Sean-nóis ag Ollscoil na hÉirea

Micheál Ó Cuaig ceaptha mar Amhránaí Cónaitheach Sean-nóis ag Ollscoil na hÉirea-image

Monday, 29 January 2007

Tá sé fógartha ag Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, go bhfuil Micheál Ó Cuaig, as Aill de Brún i leathpharóiste Chill Chiaráin, ceaptha mar Amhránaí Sean-Nóis Cónaitheach as seo go ceann bliana. Tá cuid mhór dá shaol caite ag Micheál le múinteoireacht ó bhain sé céim amach i gColáiste Phádraig, Droim Conrach i 1970. Bhí sé ina Phríomh-oide ar Scoil Naomh Ciarán ar feadh 16 bliain nó gur éirigh sé as an múinteoireacht anuraidh. Tá cáil air chomh maith mar fhile agus go leor duaiseanna Oireachtais bronnta air. D'fhoilsigh sé dhá chnuasach filíochta Uchtóga (1985) agus Clocha Reatha (1985) atá molta go hard ag léirmheastóirí as an meascán de mhothú leochaileach agus de mháistreacht teangan atá iontu. Is é Joe Éinniú ba mhó a spreag a shuim sa sean-nós agus tá Féile Chomórtha Joe Éinniú a reachtáil aige ó cuireadh ar bun í i 1985. Cúpla bliain ó shin fuair sé cóip de bhailiúchán Joe Éinniú in Ollscoil Washington, Seattle agus tá an bailiúchán sin lonnaithe anois in Áras Shorcha Ní Ghuairim i gCarna. Bhí sean-nós á theagasc agus á chur chun cinn aige sna scoileanna tráth nach raibh an oiread ranganna ar fáil is atá anois. Chomh maith leis sin tá coirmeacha ceoil agus ceardlanna amhránaíochta eagraithe aige in Éirinn agus in Albain. Uair sa bhliain, tugann sé ceoltóirí ar ardchaighdeán chuig bunscoileanna Iorras Aithnigh. Tá sé pósta le Mairéad Ní Chonghaile is tá seachtar clainne orthu. Chomh maith le taifeadadh a dhéanamh ar a stór féin amhrán agus saothair a bhailiú ó amhránaithe eile, beidh ceardlanna agus seisiúin amhránaíochta á reachtáil ag Micheál san Ollscoil féin agus in áiteanna éagsúla ar fud Chonamara as seo go ceann bliana. Beidh an tsraith cheardlann in Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh ag tosnú ag 7.00in Dé Máirt 13 Feabhra. Is iad Ealaín na Gaeltachta, Údarás na Gaeltachta agus An Chomhairle Ealaíon i bpáirt le hIonad an Léinn Éireannaigh atá ag maoiniú an togra seo. Tuilleadh eolais: Samantha Williams, Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh, OÉ Gaillimh. Guthán: 091 49 2051. Ríomhphost: samantha.williams@nuigalway.ie Críoch

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Ethnic Minorities and Healthcare Subject of National Conference

Ethnic Minorities and Healthcare Subject of National Conference-image

Friday, 26 January 2007

26 January 2007: A national conference focusing on the provision of healthcare to ethnic minorities in Ireland takes place today in the Galway Bay Hotel, Galway. The inter-agency conference, entitled 'Participation of Ethnic Minorities in the Design, Planning and Delivery of Primary Care Services,' is being organised by the Primary Care Department, HSE West in partnership with the Department of General Practice, NUI Galway and the Galway Refugee Support Group. Tríona Nic Giolla Choille and Kelly Jipé, Galway Refugee Support Group, says, "There is a need to address the social factors impacting on the health of asylum seekers and refugees. These include the system of Direct Provision, whereby people seeking asylum are accommodated for long periods in hostels, the prohibition on the right to work with its direct consequences on people's health and well being as well as the consequences in terms of poverty and social exclusion." The conference will investigate the participation of ethnic minorities in the development of appropriate primary care services. It highlights that representatives from ethnic minority communities should have a 'voice' in the shaping of primary care because they are 'experts' of their own experiences. They can bring information and insights to those responsible for designing and delivery healthcare services and policies which can inform the organisation and delivery of services. This will help reduce health inequalities between ethnic minority groups and the indigenous Irish population because culturally appropriate health services can be developed. The conference proceedings will contribute to the development of a new National Intercultural Health Strategy, which will be the subject of the keynote presentation by Alice O'Flynn, National Care Group Manager for Social Inclusion at the HSE. Mr. Frank Murphy, Local Health Manager, Roscommon, HSE West when launching the conference congratulated the Steering Committee from the HSE, University and Galway Refugee Support Group for organising the conference. He said that it is a forum to address the issues in relation to Health Services for Ethnic Minorities. Mr. Murphy stated that participation and involvement of ethnic minorities in the design, planning and delivery of services is the only way forward if services are to be culturally appropriate and sensitive to the needs of service users. Other highlights of the conference include a workshop on new research into language barriers in primary care, from the Department of General Practice at NUI Galway, which found significant discrepancies in perception between doctors and patients. NUI Galway's Anne MacFarlane led the research which was carried out among Serb-Croat and Russian speaking refugee and asylum seeking patients and GPs in Galway city According to Anne MacFarlane "The cornerstone of good medicine is good communication. However, our research shows that while GPs feel that communication problems with refugees and asylum seekers have settled down over time – for asylum seekers and refugees - speaking to and understanding their doctors is a major difficulty. According to the results, with no formal interpretation services available, the patients relied mainly on interpretation by friends and family including children. Patients also had to rely on gestures and miming or the use of dictionaries and phrase books. They find that these are inadequate solutions, often leaving them confused or ill-informed on leaving the surgery." Dr. Anne MacFarlane continued, "Refugees and asylum seekers have complex health needs that may relate to the aftermath of torture, sexual violence and mental health issues. They should not have to rely on these informal methods because they do not feel that communication in their consultations is successful. It is hard to for them to trust advice and treatment from their GPs. These are some of the healthcare issues which this important conference will address and move towards resolving." The conference is attended by policy makers, service planners, primary care professional organisations, service providers, academic and community researchers, community development workers and ethnic minority community representatives. -ends-

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