Tag Archives: Ireland

Ireland News | Women

Irish voters elect to overturn abortion ban
  • Voters overwhelmingly chose to end the country’s constitutional ban on abortion, which had no exceptions for rape, incest, or fetal abnormality.
  • The #RepealThe8th campaign challenged the constitutional amendment endowing the unborn with legal rights (ratified following a 1983 referendum), arguing that abortion has already been a reality in Ireland given its proximity to the U.K. and that access to safe treatment is a public health issue.
  • Lawmakers will now introduce a bill to legalize the repeal officially, which is expected to be passed in the fall.

Abortion referendum count: ‘quiet revolution’ as Yes set for landslide win” (The Irish Times | May 2018)

Irish abortion referendum: Exit polls suggest landslide for repeal” (BBC News | May 2018)

Ireland ends abortion ban as ‘quiet revolution’ transforms country” (Reuters | May 2018)

Ireland News | Gay Asian-Irish

Irish governing party elects first out gay, Indian-descendent PM
  • The Fine Gael voted Leo Varadkar its new leader, a gay, half-Indian man set to become the youngest PM in Irish history.
  • Varadkhar, 38, was born to an Indian immigrant father and an Irish mother and has become a polarizing conservative firebrand in Irish politics since his first election in 2007.
  • The election has been lauded as a monumental moment for the predominantly Catholic country that in 2015 became the first in the world to codify marriage equality into law through referendum.

Varadkar becomes Irish PM-in-waiting in social, generational shift” (Reuters | June 2017)

Leo Varadkar wins: Ireland set to install first openly gay Prime Minister” (The Independent | June 2017)

From Enda (66) to Leo (38): Ireland set to replace oldest EU leader with youngest” (The Irish Times | June 2017)

(Image Credit: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters)

Global Events: Black Lives Matter Protests

Black Lives Matter Globally

As a series of controversial shootings of African-American men by police has renewed attention to the Black Lives Matter movement in the U.S., people around the world have stood in solidarity with black Americans seeking to root out racial profiling, excessive use of force, and lack of accountability in U.S. law enforcement. For some, the demonstrations have been defined mostly by a kind of international allyism, but in many parts of the world, the American movement has prompted reflection on the treatment of local black communities—native, historical, and immigrant—by law enforcement, politicians, and broader society. Here is a look at the global demonstrations and solidarity movements in the name of Black Lives Matter: Continue reading Global Events: Black Lives Matter Protests

Europe & Eurasia Research | LGBTI

The State of LGBTI Security in Europe

ILGA-Europe recently released its annual report on the state of LGBT rights and security across the Europe. Covering developments in individual countries and transnational institutions from 2015, the report notes increasing legal protections for gender minorities and family and partnership rights for sexual minorities in Southern and Western Europe as well as ongoing political exclusion, persecution, and violence in Eastern Europe and Eurasia. Here are some of the highlights:


Rated the most progressive European country, Malta’s groundbreaking law prohibiting surgical intervention into a person’s sex characteristics without consent and inclusive education policies for trans, intersex, and other gender minorities were cited as distinctive policies.

Finland, France, Greece, Ireland

Other countries with significant judicial or policy victories regarding the rights of gender minorities.

Ireland, Luxembourg

Countries extending marriage rights to same-sex couples

Cyprus, Greece

Countries extending civil partnership rights to same-sex couples

Austria, Portugal

Countries extending adoption rights to same-sex couples

Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia

Bottom three countries for LGBTI security

Armenia, FYR Macedonia, Slovenia

Countries blocking same-sex marriage rights

Hungary, Montenegro, Russia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine

Countries denying, limiting, or antagonizing organization and assembly rights of LGBTI civil society groups

Annual Review of the Human Rights Situation of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex People in Europe 2016 (ILGA-Europe)

Rainbow Europe
Azerbaijan worst place to be gay in Europe, finds LGBTI index” (The Guardian)
Which EU states are out of touch on gay marriage?” (euronews)

Ireland News | LGBT & HIV

HIV testing in Ireland expands into gay bars
  • The Panti Bar, run by LGBT and poz activist Panti Bliss (drag persona of Rory O’Neill), is set to begin offering 30-second HIV tests to patrons.
  • HIV infection rates rose 160% in Ireland between 2005 and 2015, including a record high of 182 new cases in 2014.
  • With trained counselors on site and the ability to register positive individuals with Ireland’s treatment and counseling program, the Panti Bar will be the first expansion of HIV testing out of clinical settings in Ireland, with similar programs to follow in Cork, Limerick, and other parts of Dublin.

Read more:
Dublin drag queen turns pub into HIV-Aids testing centre” (The Guardian)
Rory O’Neill on living with HIV: ‘Most gay guys don’t understand how far things have changed and how different it is’” (Independent.ie)

Ireland mourns the victims of a deadly balcony collapse in California as the public lashes out against negative attention to the visa program in which the students participated
  • A memorial service was held on the campus of the University of California, Davis, for the six Irish students who died in Berkeley, while another seven remain injured.
  • Outrage has mounted as the construction company responsible for the structure was revealed to have settled a lawsuit for improper balcony construction two years ago.
  • There has been significant backlash against a New York Times piece run following the tragedy drawing attention to negative incidents involving Irish students visiting the U.S. under the J-1, a visa for cultural exchange programs.

“The reaction to the tragedy showed the solidarity of Irish people when adverse events occurred. …We’ve always had this in Ireland; people understand adversity, they understand death, they understand people being taken away.”

More on this story at The Guardian.

(Image Credit: Niall Carson/PA, via The Guardian)

Ireland’s gender identity bill moves away from medical to self-declarative model for legal recognition for transpeople.
  • The change in the bill applies to those over the age of 18 seeking to legally change their gender.
  • The bill also removes a “forced divorce” clause dissolving a marriage if one of the partners transitions.
  • In allowing for self-declaration, the bill hopes to separate civil registration and medical treatment considerations for trans individuals.

“Throughout the drafting of this Bill, I have listened carefully to the views of individual citizens, representative groups and public representatives. It is essential that this important legislation is in line with international best practice.”

More on this story at PinkNews.

Ireland’s Equality Minister works to secure LGBT employment anti-discrimination legislation for schools and hospitals before the start of the new school year. More from The Irish Times.

The Week’s Rounds

Israel nixes bus segregation plans, the U.K. takes strong stance against undocumented immigrant labor, Russian bill looks to criminalize abortion procedures, a British Muslim woman takes on ISIS through poetry, Ireland celebrates passing of same-sex marriage referendum, and 35 other stories in this week’s news rounds… Continue reading The Week’s Rounds

The Friday Rounds

Charges in Freddie Gray’s case, the “godfather of African music” in Canada, male-only social clubs in London, and more in today’s Rounds… Continue reading The Friday Rounds