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One in Four welcomes the Government’s publication of the Bill to amend the Constitution to safeguard the rights and protection of all children
One in Four, the national charity which supports women and men who have experienced sexual violence today welcomed the announcement by Government of its proposed wording for a constitutional amendment on children and the publication of the 28th Amendment of the Constitution Bill 2007.
Speaking today, Deirdre Fitzpatrick, Advocacy Director said “One in Four have repeatedly called for the rights of all children to be enshrined in our Constitution and the first provision of this proposed amendment ensures this; “The State acknowledges and affirms the natural and imprescriptible rights of all children.”
 “The Ferns Report, published in October 2005, recommended that inter-agency groups be set up to ensure the protection of children and One in Four has consistently recognised that this vital child protection measure can only be put in place with a constitutional basis.”
“We welcome the proposed wording of Section 5.1 which will provide for the gathering of ‘soft information’ and consider this an essential child protection measure.” She added.
Section 5.2 will ensure a zone of absolute protection for children and vulnerable adults, safeguarding them from harm and from the rigours of an adversarial defence cross-examination and any suggestion of ‘honest mistake.’
Fitzpatrick went on to say; “Whilst we welcome the proposed wording today,we believe that the issue of the rights of children and the protection of their welfare is essential for the future of our children and requires careful debate and consideration. We would call on each political party to co-operate in this debate and we look forward to engaging in this debate examining thoroughly the proposed wording of the amendment to the Constitution.” We would concur with Barnardos and the Ombudsman for Children in urging the Government to offer sufficient time for debate and discussion.

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Support and resources for people who have experienced sexual abuse and/or sexual violence.