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Civil Society Charter for a Constitutional Convention

We, the undersigned organisations, call upon the Government to create a Constitutional Convention that is:

Participative

The Government should foster national ownership of the Constitutional Convention from the outset by setting it up through a process that is open, participative, inclusive and transparent.

Sufficient resources should be made available to facilitate widespread and meaningful consultation with, education of, and participation by members of the public, civil society and other interested stakeholders.

An open and transparent appointments process should ensure that membership of the Convention is balanced, representative and facilitates meaningful input by civil society organisations and those on the margins of society.

Inclusive

A range of civic education measures should be undertaken to inform members of the public about the role, scope and potential outcome of the Constitutional Convention.

National and local media, civil society organisations, community networks and information technology should be utilised to ensure the widest possible access and participation by the public is achieved.

Widespread and comprehensive consultation should be undertaken with members of the public, the Diaspora and civil society organisations to facilitate meaningful engagement with the process and the issues for discussion.

Facilitating meaningful input by civil society organisations, particularly on issues of direct concern to their members, must be a priority for the Constitutional Convention throughout the process.

Meaningful

Knowledge and experience, which would benefit the Convention in its deliberations, should be drawn from as wide a pool of experts as possible including from the legal, academic, political and community sectors.

The list of topics presented by the Government should be expanded. The opportunity afforded by the convention to explore other potential issues for reform in relation to the Constitution should not be lost, including issues of electoral reform, equality, the family, and economic, social and cultural rights.

Members of the public should be provided with an opportunity to consider the recommendations of the convention and to provide feedback.

Signed:

Acquired Brain Injury Ireland
Adoption Rights Alliance
Africa Centre
AIDS Partnership with Africa
Amnesty International
An Bradan Feasa
Anchor Treatment Centre Ltd
Atheist Ireland
Carers Belfast Branch
Carmichael Centre for Voluntary Groups
Childfund Ireland
Claiming Our Future
Co Wicklow Network for Older People
Coeliac Society of Ireland
Comber Foundation
Community Knowledge Initiative, NUI Galway
Concern
D8CEC -Dublin 8 Community Education Centre
Disability Federation of Ireland
Dóchas
Domestic Violence Advocacy Service
Domestic Violence Advocacy Service, Sligo, Leitrim & West Cavan
Dual Diagnosis Ireland
Fergus O’Ferrall, Adelaide Asst. Professor of Health Policy, Trinity College Dublin
FLAC
GLEN
Global NGO Centres
Brian Harvey
Irish Association of Youth Orchestras
Irish Council for Civil Liberties
Irish Deaf Society
Irish Family Planning Association
Irish Gerontological Society
Irish Heart Foundation
Irish Hospice Foundation
Irish Penal Reform Trust
Irish Refugee Council
Justice for Magdalenes
Kerry Parents & Friends Association
Kilmuckridge Memorial Hall Community Enterprise Ltd
L'Arche Ireland
Kathleen Lynch, Professor of Equality Studies, UCD
MDI
MLD Ireland
Mulhuddart/Corduff Community Drug Team Ltd
Helen Ó Murchú, former president of Comhdháil Náisiúnta naGaeilge
Nagle Centre
NAOMI-Billings Ireland
National Traveller Women's Forum
National Women's Council of Ireland
North & East Cork County Citizens Information Service
Northside Centre for the Unemployed
Northside Community Law and Mediation Centre
OWN Ireland
Kevin Rafter, Senior Lecturer, Journalism and Political Communications, DCU
Rural Community Network
Second Republic
Senior Help Line
Slí Eile Support Services Ltd
South West Kerry Women's Association
St Dominics Community Response Project
Swan Youth Service
TENI
The Integration Centre
The Wheel
Transparency International
Treoir
Voluntary Arts Ireland
Walk With You
Whitebarn Consulting
Youth Work Ireland

 


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