Courts - Ireland - Discrimination against fathers
11/06/2004 - 17:20:36
Irish fathers face the worst discrimination
in Europe, a support group claimed tonight.
The Unmarried and Separated Fathers of Ireland
said the constitution and the courts did not recognise the
increasing diversity of modern families.
The group has organised a major conference at
the Citywest Conference Centre next week in a bid to form
policy to protect the rights of fathers.
Director Ray Kelly said the issue has to be
“This is the tenth anniversary of the
1994 UN Year of the Family, which the Government signed up
to,” he said.
“But nothing has changed. Nelson Mandela
would come out of retirement if he saw what we’re seeing.”
The conference on Monday will be the first ever
national summit to bring together members of support and community
groups and policy makers to debate the role of fathers in
The ‘Facing the Challenge’ conference
has been funded by the Department of Social and Family Affairs
to mark the tenth anniversary of the UN Year of the Family.
Mr Kelly said the group had extended invitations
to a broad variety of groups representing both men and women.
“We’re optimistic that they will
attend. We need to stop this thing about men and women. It’s
all about parents and children,” he said.
Speakers at the conference will include
family law expert Geoffrey Shannon, the journalist John Waters
and the rugby analyst George Hook. There will also be workshops
about the role of the father in the family, the role of the
state and the role of society.