Senator Fintan Warfield has urged the Government to allow for the early release of the 1926 Census in order to put inestimable value, nuance and humanity on what are generally regarded as the most contested events in the foundation of the state.
Senator Fintan Warfield said:
“The early release of the 1926 Census returns has a pivotal role to play in expanding our knowledge of the most defining and contested events in modern Irish history, from the 1913 Lock Out through to the War of Independence, the partition of Ireland and subsequent civil war”.
Having argued [see memorandum on the Statistics (1926 Census Release) Bill 2017] for special heritage status to be afforded this hugely significant historical document, Senator Warfield says:
“It’s timely to remind ourselves that the value of the Census goes way beyond merely sating the curiosity of family and social historians in the manner of the hugely popular 1901 and 1911 census documents.
“By conferring on the 1926 Census a special heritage status and enabling its early release, we are acknowledging its critical historical and genealogical significance at what was a seminal time in our history.
“Access to the 1926 Census returns will put inestimable value, nuance and humanity on what are generally regarded as the most contested events in the foundation of the state.
“It’s beyond time that government embrace the spirit and imperative of the Statistics (1926 Census Release) Bill 2017 and afford Irish society a window into a unique chapter in our journey of self-determination.”
In response to Budget 2019, Sinn Féin spokesperson for the Arts Senator Fintan Warfield has welcomed the restoration of funding to cultural bodies and agencies but has called on the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to finally offer clarity about the government’s commitment to double arts funding by 2025.
Senator Warfield said:
“In 2017, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar committed to double arts funding over seven years. Two budgets later, the government have only increased spending on culture by 13.8% (from €130.2m to €148.2m), a long way off an increase of 100%.
“Minister Madigan said today that this budget demonstrates a realisation of that promise. But the figures simply do not back that up.
“Artists continue to be left devastated by austerity. According to CSO data, artists now earn 3.5% less income than they did in 2013.
“It is therefore critical for the Arts Council to ensure that the full 10% increase provided by Government is passed on to artists who have been making brilliant work, while struggling for years to make ends meet”.
I want to commend the brave women who have come forward to share their stories. Stories of difficult decisions made. Stories of shame shipped overseas. Stories told in a selfless manner, that articulate difficult circumstances. And stories put into the public space so we, as policy makers and citizens can listen, and reform a law so that others will not have to confront the same.
Through the Chair, I firstly wish to commend Senator Catherine Noone for the role you played as Chairperson of the Joint Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution.
I think you were calm, patient, fair, and everything an institution like this can hope for in the conduct of a Chairperson, and those traits all the more impressive when we consider the issue at hand, and indeed the behaviours of some.
For quite a while, it has been apparent that we would be discussing, in our first sitting week back, the Report of the Joint Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution.
And isn’t it something that on our return, that during the first statements of 2018 – the centenary of women’s suffrage in Ireland, we debate, discuss, and converse about where Ireland lies concerning women’s healthcare and women’s rights.