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Report to the Oireachtas on the Thirty-First Amendment of the Constitution (Children) Bill 2012

The Government published the Thirty-First Amendment of the Constitution (Children) Bill, 2012 on the 19th of September 2012. The Bill sets out a proposed amendment to the Constitution, repealing section 5 of the existing Article 42 and inserting a new Article 42A entitled “Children”.

The Ombudsman for Children has been calling for an amendment to the Constitution to give greater protection to the rights of the child since its first year of operation. The central message of each submission made to the Government and to the Oireachtas on this issue has been the same: Ireland should enshrine key children’s rights principles in the Constitution in order to underpin a fundamental shift in our law, policy and practice regarding children.