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Rural Policy 2020 - Public Consultation
In 2017, the Government launched the Action Plan for Rural Development to support the economic and social development of rural Ireland. The Second Progress Report under this Plan was published in April 2018 and, while progress has been made in many areas, a number of key initiatives fall under the heading ‘Delayed Actions’ (Department of Rural and Community Development, 2018:20). These sixteen delayed actions cover areas such as housing, childcare, environmental protection, public transport and the digital landscape. Areas which speak to the very heart of rural development and sustainability. Rural Ireland experiences greater levels of youth migration and has an older population than urban centres. In the absence of decent infrastructure and services, this is set to continue.
The consultation on Rural Policy, open until the 11th October 2019, presents an opportunity for groups and individuals to have their say on the challenges and benefits of rural life. Some of Social Justice Ireland's recent publications in this area are detailed below. These both set out the context and propose realistic policy recommendations to support rural communities: