In Ireland, government postpones referendum on gender equality and constitutional provision on "women in the home"

By Elaine Loughlin, 21 September 2023
 Flag of Ireland (photo credit: OpenClipart-Vectors via pixabay)
Flag of Ireland (photo credit: OpenClipart-Vectors via pixabay)
A referendum on women in the home is set to be delayed until February at the earliest, the Taoiseach has indicated. Leo Varadkar has raised fears around disinformation ahead of the vote and said he wants to provide the Electoral Commission with as much time as it needs to run a full information campaign. Mr Varadkar previously announced that a vote to remove ‘sexist’ references to women would take place in November, however, this deadline is now seen as unrealistic. The Taoiseach has said that he will have the wording of two votes — one to address women in the home and the other to remove the reference to family being based on marriage — ready for sign-off in the coming weeks. However, he admitted that he is “very conscious” of comments made by the chief executive of the Electoral Commission, Art O’Leary who warned that a “proper information campaign” of up to 16 weeks is needed ahead of any referendum. “It’s the first time that they’ll be running a referendum, they don’t just have the role of running the referendum itself in terms of ballot boxes and ballot papers, they also have the role of running the information campaign. I’ve heard him [Mr O’Leary] say in interviews that he would need maybe three or four months lead-in time to get that right.”
Read the full article here: Irish Examiner


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