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Communicating Europe – September 2009

November 2, 2009

In September we held a series of four meetings on Communicating Europe & the Lisbon Treaty. This was in response to requests from members.

The Irish Senior Citizens Parliament facilitated these meeting with Members of the European Parliament & other public representatives to inform Older People about the European Union & the Lisbon Treaty and their affect on older people.

Four meetings were held with a variety of speakers. The format was each meeting started with a “Just the Facts” presentation setting the context and history of the European Union facilitated by Andrea Pappin of the European Movement Ireland or Peadar O’Broin of the Institute of International & European Affairs. We sought a representative from the European Commission, but they were unable to facilitate our request.

This was followed by (an equal number of) speakers in favour (Y) of the Treaty & against (N) the Treaty. We had lively discussions as quite a number of older people came along both to listen and contribute.

The main speakers were:

  • Dún Laoghaire / Rathdown: Mary Hanafin TD (Y), Proinsias de Rossa MEP (Y), Eoin O’Broin (N) (in place of Mary Lou McDonald) and Tony Allwright, journalist (N). Seán Barrett TD attended and made a contribution. Frank Farrelly, ISCP Dún Laoghaire/Rathdown chaired the meeting.

DLR speakers

  • EPIC, Dublin: Gay Mitchell MEP (Y) & Patricia McKenna (N). Sylvia Meehan, President ISCP, chaired the meeting

EPIC Meeting

  • Finglas: Proinsias de Rossa MEP & Joe Higgins MEP (N). Hugh Smullen, Chair of Finglas Division ISCP, welcomed the attendees & speakers.
  • Galway: Cllr. Catherine Connolly (N) & Dr. Brendan Flynn, NUIG (Y). Evelyn Moran, ISCP Honorary Secretary & Galway Division chaired the meeting.
  • These meetings were organised in close cooperation with the local Divisions of the Parliament. Máiréad Hayes CEO and ISCP staff attended all meetings.

    Issues raised at the meetings included : healthcare, pensions, new taxes, why a second referendum, security & defence, the Citizens Initiative, the Charter of Fundamental Rights, the Irish guarantees, Ireland’s Commissioner, wage rates, climate change and & voting rights.

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