Union of Students in Ireland (USI) and Conradh na Gaeilge are bringing a giant ballot box and giant ballot papers to Dáil Éireann at 1.00pm today (Wednesday, 7 October 2015) to highlight the importance of Irish-language and Gaeltacht issues for third level students in the upcoming general elections.
Aedraen Ó Dubhghaill, Vice President and Irish-Language Officer with USI, says:
“USI understands the importance of the next five years in regards to the growth and prosperity of the Irish language. The students of Ireland are no longer satisfied to stand idly by, to allow ‘Béalghrá’ or ‘lip service’ to be delivered to the language by political parties – that’s why we are demanding coherent action from our political representatives and all general election candidates.”
There have been several events over the past six months that have affected Irish-speaking and Gaeltacht students, and have resulted in USI questioning the Government’s commitment to the language community, including the air aviation crisis in the Aran islands; the omission of up to 50,000 placenames in Irish from the new Eircode system; and the removal of the state oral exam in Irish for Junior Certificate students. All of these actions have fuelled discontentment among the Irish-language and Gaeltacht community, both young and old
This show of support by third level students today takes place one day after Conradh na Gaeilge, USI, and over 70 other groups launched an Irish-language and Gaeltacht investment plan in the Mansion House, Dublin. The investment plan is being proposed by over 70 Irish-language and Gaeltacht groups, including community and all-island organisations and their funding authorities, and USI is calling on all political parties to show their support for the plan in their general election manifestos.
Aedraen Ó Dubhghaill,
Vice-President for the Irish language, Union of Students in Ireland
00 353 (0)86 1303104
Edel Ní Bhraonáin,
Student Third Level Co-Ordinator
00 353 (0)87 6289794
NOTE FOR THE EDITOR:
PHOTOGRAPHS AVAILABLE FROM:
Shane O'Neill - Conor McCabe,
Conor McCabe Photography