Dublin City Council last night voted in support of a Citizens’ Assembly on Irish Unity. The Councillors voted by a large majority to call on the Irish government to establish such an Assembly.
The motion was proposed by Sinn Féin Councillor Mícheál Mac Donncha, who stated:
“The endorsement of the Citizens’ Assembly by Dublin City Council, the largest Council in Ireland, is very significant and welcome.
“We live in changing times – a time of positive change. Today, 3,000 people became new Irish citizens. A growing number of people from the North, of all communities, are applying for Irish passports.
“Last week, hundreds of people from all backgrounds in the North filled the Ulster Hall in Belfast for an Ireland’s Future meeting, most notably people from a formerly Unionist background. More people from that community, especially young people, are saying they are open now to the idea of constitutional change and a united Ireland.
“The government’s announced €50 million for the Shared Island initiative is very welcome. So, the logical next step, to give citizens a voice, is setting up a Citizens’ Assembly.”
Text of Motion:
This Council notes and welcomes the establishment of two new Citizens’ Assemblies by the Irish Government; it further notes that Citizens’ Assemblies are powerful democratic exercises that inform citizens, allowing them to debate specifics, develop positions and inform policy. They have operated effectively in many jurisdictions across the world.
This Council calls on the Irish Government to establish an all-Ireland Citizens’ Assembly to debate and discuss our constitutional future. The debate on Irish Unity is live and growing, and we must plan for constitutional change, in the context of the Good Friday provision for a Unity referendum.
This Council also invites officials from the Taoiseach’s Shared Island Unit to present to the Council and provide an update on activity and plans for the future.
This motion should be forwarded to the Office of the Taoiseach.
Cllr Mícheál Mac Donncha