Deputy James Bannon pledges to protect children’s rights in Longford-Westmeath

This week Deputy James Bannon has pledged his support to the Children’s Rights Alliance and its call to strengthen children’s rights in the Constitution.

With cross-party support for the holding of a referendum, Deputy Bannon has offered his own individual support to protect children’s rights in Longford-Westmeath so that each child is cherished equally. This invaluable support comes in the week that the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child celebrates its 22nd anniversary.

Deputy James Bannon says: “Each and every childhood counts and I’m delighted to pledge my support to the Alliance and to their work to secure a referendum to strengthen children’s rights in the Constitution. We need our Constitution to be the best it can be - to reflect our views on childhood today, rather than in the time that it was written, in 1937, when children were to be seen and not heard. We need a Constitution that will protect our children and guide the courts to make decisions that keep families together and that are in the child’s best interests. I know the people of Longford and Westmeath would welcome the opportunity to say ‘yes, we value childhood’ and ‘yes, Ireland values all children and their rights’.”

Senator Jillian van Turnhout, outgoing chief executive of the Alliance, says: “Deputy Bannon is a true champion for children: in Longford and Westmeath, in the Oireachtas, and Ireland itself. Over recent years, high profile cases of extreme neglect and horrific exploitation of children have brought into sharp focus our need to do something to change how Ireland treats its children. This requires our Constitution to be updated because, as it stands, children are almost invisible within the Constitution and when children find themselves in dangerous or difficult situations, the Constitution makes it impossible to give the same level of protection to each child. This situation must change and we are grateful for Deputy Bannon’s support.”

 

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