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Civil Society and Policy - Resources

This section contains resources for civil society and community and voluntary organisations.  This material has a particular focus on policy and on citizen engagement.  We provide this material to help these organisations to play an informed role and contribute towards influencing and shaping policy both locally and nationally.

This Circular, issued by the Department on 25 June 2015 outlines the arrangements for funding of Public Participation Networks in 2015. In addition, it gives a number of possible models for the employment of a resource worker, including a draft job description and workplan.  It also suggests a draft Memorandum of Understanding / Service Level Agreement between a Local Authority and PPN.

Public Participation Networks (PPNs) provide an opportunity for real engagement between local people and local authorities.  PPNs have been established in all local authority areas in 2014/15.  Membership is open to not for profit groups in the social inclusion, environmental and general community and voluntary  sectors. 

Social Justice Ireland's policy proposals on participation, supporting the Community and Voluntary Sector and ensuring all voices are heard in Social Dialogue and a local and national level are available to download here.

To mark World Social Justice Day Social Justice Ireland  hosted a seminar to discuss the challenges that climate justice poses to policy making in Ireland both from a national and international perspective.  Two presentations outling the national and international challenges were given by the EPA and Trocaire respectively.  These presentations are available to download below.  This event also forms part of Social Justice Ireland's contribution to the European Year of Development 2015. 

The Budget for each Local Authority is published annually and can be found in the Publications tab, Local Government section of the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government website.  The Budgets are a useful resource for Public Participation Networks and other groups seeking to influence local policy. They identify the budget available to each local authority under headings such as Housing and Building, Road Transport and safety, Water, Development management, Environment, Recreation and Amenity, Agriculture, Education, Health and Welfare etc.

The troika made a major mistake in deciding the terms of Ireland’s bailout programme when they failed to factor in its social impact according to Minister for Finance Michael Noonan.

Speaking at the IMF conference in Dublin Castle last Monday, he said the same mistake had also been made in other countries when they failed to consider the effects that austerity policies would have on people.

The Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government as produced guidelines for the development of Local Economic and Community Plans in each Local Authority Area.  These plans are overseen jointly by the Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) and the Strategic Policy Committee for Economic Development.  Both of these groups have PPN representation.  

The Irish State should play a greater role in industrial development, basing its decisions on skilful evidence-based analysis and deeper democratic participation, speakers stated in a round-table discussion at Social Justice Ireland’s 2014 Policy Conference.

Ireland needs a combination of vision and pragmatic policies that can truly move the country towards a desirable and sustainable future. The lack of a “guiding vision” in Ireland has led to a lack of coherence at the core of public policy.  The need for long-term planning, a new social contract and a guiding vision to underpin policy were among the issues addressed at Social Justice Ireland's Social Policy Conference 2014.

Measuring up? Ireland’s progress: past, present and future
November 24, 2015 - Ash Suite, Croke Park, Dublin.

Programme

Conference Chairperson:  Michael Clifford.

8:45                    Registration

9:20                    Opening remarks

9:30                Beyond GDP: Measuring Ireland's progress in the 21st century 
                           Charles Clark and Catherine Kavanagh

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