Friday, 6 May 2016: For immediate release
Children Rights Alliance Welcomes Appointment of Katherine Zappone as new Minister for Children and Youth Affairs
The Children’s Rights Alliance warmly welcomes the appointment of Katherine Zappone, TD, as the new Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, heading up the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
Tanya Ward, Chief Executive of the Alliance, says: “We heartily congratulate Minister Zappone on her appointment today as the new Minister for Children and Youth Affairs. Katherine Zappone has an outstanding track record in the fields of equality, human rights and education. Minister Zappone is an excellent fit for this important portfolio for children. Her contribution to Irish society over many years through her work on community education at An Cosán, her work as an Independent senator in Seanad Éireann and her tireless efforts to secure marriage equality, has been trailblazing.
I look forward to working with, and closely monitoring, the work of Minister Zappone as she addresses the many challenges facing children in Ireland. Key to this will be the roll-out of the commitments contained in Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures, the National Policy Framework for Children and Young People. Other important priorities include addressing child poverty and child homelessness as well as improving life for vulnerable groups of children, such as those in direct provision, many Traveller children, children with mental health problems and children with disabilities.
I would like to acknowledge the excellent work carried out by outgoing minister, Dr. James Reilly, TD, during his term as Minister for Children and Youth Affairs since July 2014. During this time, he secured historic victories for children, not least an effective ban on corporal punishment and the prohibition of smoking in cars with children. He also managed to unlock important resources for Tusla, the Child and Family Agency. We also thank him for expertly leading Ireland’s successful review to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child earlier this year.
The Children’s Rights Alliance also warmly welcomes the retention of Frances Fitzgerald, TD, as Minister for Justice and Equality and in her appointment as Tánaiste. Already in this role, Minister Fitzgerald was central to the passage of the Marriage Equality referendum and spearheaded a number of important advancements for children, including the passage of the Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 and giving better recognition to asylum-seeking children.”
Notes to Editor
- Tanya Ward is available for interview
For further information and interview bids, please contact:
Emma McKinley, Communications and Development Manager
Tel: (01) 662 9400 / 087 655967