The past Social Inclusion Week, the Galway Traveller Movement (GTM) and Galway Anti Racism Network (GARN) asked Galwegians to add their voices to the call for the recognition of Traveller Ethnicity.
We requested everyone to take photos holding a sign with#TravellerEthnicityNow on it and share it on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #TravellerEthnicityNow. Make your opinioncount and say - I support the movement for #TravellerEthnicityNow
On Twitter, we told the Taoiseach and the Minister for Equality that Traveller ethnicity must be recognised now! We tweeted at @EndaKennyTD and @davidstantontd using #TravellerEthnicityNow
We emailed and phoned your local TDs and told them why this is an important issue and why Travellers should be recognised as a minority ethnic group. We organise a meetings and dropped into their clinics to talk about the issue. GARN and GTM organised visits local TDs.
We’ll be posting all the information people need to take part in this action like draft emails to TDs and clinic times. Watch this space!
The Campaign for Traveller Ethnicity
Travellers have been fighting for decades to be recognised as a minority ethnic group. There is no conflict between nationality and ethnicity. Recognising Traveller ethnicity won’t make Travellers less Irish, it will however acknowledge Traveller’s dual identity of being both Irish and Travellers similar to African Americans etc. Recognition is about respect and inclusion; respecting Traveller culture and acknowledging the valuable contribution Travellers have made to Irish society. It would also mean Travellers are automatically included in anti-racism and inclusion policies and initiatives.
Travellers are recognised as a minority ethnic group in Northern Ireland and the UK. The Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality recommended the government recognise Traveller ethnicity. Several UN bodies have also recommended Traveller ethnicity is recognised.
What needs to happen for Traveller ethnicity to be recognised?
The Taoiseach or the Minister for Equality needs to make a statement to the Dail stating the Irish State recognises the ethnicity of the Traveller community.
This won’t happen unless there is pressure on our politicians to do so. So join us in taking action!
TRAVELLER ETHNICITY NOW!