Promoting Justice


Some of our Current Special Projects and Campaigns:

Criminal Justice

The ICCL believes that a fair and just criminal justice system should protect the human rights of defendants and victims alike.  The ICCL monitors government policy on an ongoing basis to ensure that fair trial rights are upheld. Our most recent work in this area was the publication of Taking Liberties (June 2008); a report critiquing the notion of ‘Balance’ within the criminal justice system. The ICCL also seeks to secure effective recognition of and protection for the human rights of crime victims and has highlighted these rights in its Charter of Rights for Victims of Crime.


Garda Reform

The ICCL has long campaigned for an independent police complaints mechanism and to ensure that individuals are not subject to arbitrary and unjust use of police powers. Following the disbandment of the Garda Complaints Board and the establishment of the independent Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC), the ICCL continues to call for adequate support and funding to ensure the GSOC can fulfil its remit to operate independently.  The ICCL has also been involved in delivering human rights training to members of the Gardaí and it currently offers strategic human rights advice to the Garda Commissioner through membership of an expert panel.  



The judiciary plays a central role in the legal system in upholding human rights standards. Through its policy, research (Justice Matters Part 1 & Part 2) and campaign work the ICCL is seeking improvements in judicial studies to ensure that judges are more aware of their human rights obligations and of diversity issues, together with a system of judicial accountability for members of the public.



Designation of Policing Authority Chairperson Requires “Urgent Review” says Rights Watchdog

  • News Item
  • May 18, 2015
ICCL press release Monday 18 May 2015  The Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has welcomed the publication today (18 May 2015) of the Garda Síochána (Policing Authority and Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2015. However, the rights watchdog ha...

ICCL Statement on Publication of Draft Policing Authority legislation

  • News Item
  • November 7, 2014
Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) press statement Friday, 7 November 2014 Today (Friday 7 November 2014), Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald published draft legislation for the establishment of a new Policing Authority. Commenting on the ...

Waterford’s racist mob highlights “urgent” need for hate law reform says ICCL

  • News Item
  • October 28, 2014
Waterford’s racist mob highlights “urgent” need for hate law reform says ICCL Irish Council for Civil Liberties press release Tuesday, 28 October, 2014 Last weekend’s violent behaviour by a racist mob in Waterford highlights the urgent need f...

Cooke’s GSOC report is “an exercise in smoke and mirrors” says ICCL

  • News Item
  • June 10, 2014
ICCL Press Release, for immediate release 22:00, Tuesday 10 June 2014   Ireland’s human rights watchdog, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has described the 65-page Cooke report into the possible bugging of the Garda Síochána Ombudsma...

ICCL to address Oireachtas Justice Committee on Garda Reform

  • Article
  • May 13, 2014

**Read our submission to the Committee via the reader above or at the link below.**

Tomorrow morning, Wednesday 14 May 2014, the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality will conduct oral hearings as part of its review the effectiveness of legislation relating to the oversight of the Garda Síochána (the Garda Act 2005). 

The ICCL will address the committee during the hearings’ morning session, during which it will outline its views on a number of gaps in the oversight of policing in Ireland, which were not adequately addressed by the Garda Act 2005, and which have been further brought to light by the recent series of Garda-related controversies. The ICCL will further outline some key measures required to ensure that Ireland’s police accountability and oversight structures are fit for purpose.

The ICCL’s address will draw upon its formal submission to the Committee in April of this year, as well as Implementing Morris, its major 2006 study on the aftermath of the Morris Tribunal, the recommendations of which remain unimplemented. 

The ICCL’s Submission can be downloaded from our website HERE or via our ISSUU e-reader account HERE.

The ICCL’s 2006 study Implementing Morris: An Agenda for Change – Putting Human Rights at The Core of Policing in Ireland can be downloaded HERE

The Committee hearings may be viewed online on the Oireachtas website at http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/watchlisten/

Rights watchdog deplores “profound systems failures” identified in Guerin report

  • News Item
  • May 9, 2014
Irish Council for Civil Liberties Press release For immediate release Friday, 9 May 2014 Ireland’s human rights watchdog, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has issued its initial reaction to the 336-page report of the Guerin review of ac...

ICCL Reaction to Shatter Resignation

  • News Item
  • May 7, 2014
ICCL Statement, Wednesday 7 May 2014, 17.45 In a statement, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties has expressed its regret at the resignation this afternoon of Alan Shatter TD as Minister for Justice and Equality. ICCL Director Mr Mark Kelly said: ...

ICCL Submission on Review of Procedures for Appointment as a Judge

  • Article
  • March 10, 2014

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) made a submission in February 2014 to the consultation of the Department of Justice and Equality on the review of procedures for the appointment of members of the judiciary.

In thesubmission, the ICCL makes a series of recommendations on how the current judicial appointments process should be re-organised, through legislation and administrative change, to bring the Irish judicial appointments system in line with international legal and human rights standards.

The submission can be downloaded HERE.

The submission was also reported in the Irish Times on 10 March 2014 - the article can be read HERE.



ICCL comment on recent statement by Mr Oliver J. Connolly, former Garda Confidential Recipient

  • News Item
  • March 4, 2014
Press Statement from the Irish Council for Civil Liberties4 March 2014, 15:30The Irish Council for Civil Liberties has this afternoon (4 March 2014) issued the following statement:“The ICCL is somewhat bemused by the suggestion from the former Conf...

Enough is enough, rights watchdog tells Government; independent inquiry needed now

  • News Item
  • February 25, 2014
Press statement Tuesday 25 February 2014 Ireland's independent human rights watchdog, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has sharply criticised the Government's proposal to appoint a barrister to consider whether or not an independent inqui...
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