Irish news media summary – 21st February

A review  – short reports and links

FF Bill in support of gay teachers
Irish Times – As the law stands, she said, a school could claim that hiring a gay teacher would undermine their religious ethos. Such discrimination is specifically permitted under Section 37 of the Employment Equality Act.“Over 90 per cent of Irish primary schools are under Catholic management. Such schools could be entitled to refuse to hire a gay or lesbian teacher or principal. Many teachers therefore feel compelled to hide their sexual orientation from their colleagues and pretend to be someone they are not. Our Bill would tackle this injustice and prohibit discrimination against LGB teachers.”

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said: “As a republican party, a commitment to fighting discrimination in all forms is a core value for Fianna Fáil. The introduction of civil partnership by the last Government was a major step forward for gay and lesbian couples. This legislation is another key initiative to ensure that LGB people can live open and happy lives, free from discrimination.” The Bill has been welcomed by the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network and the Irish National Teachers’ Organisation Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Group.
Read more – http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2012/0220/1224312051706.html

Call for ‘transphobic’ Paddy Power advert to be withdrawn
TheJournal.ie – The Transgender Equality Network Ireland has called the advert “deeply hurtful” – but Paddy Power says it was intended to be “a bit of mild mannered fun”.

Read more – http://www.thejournal.ie/call-for-transphobic-paddy-power-advert-to-be-withdrawn-360586-Feb2012/

Ireland gives €5 million in emergency funding to Sahel region
The Journal.ie – Ten million people are at risk from a growing food crisis in Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Chad, Cameroon and Nigeria.

Read more – http://www.thejournal.ie/ireland-gives-e5-million-in-emergency-funding-to-sahel-region-360538-Feb2012/

Pope ‘scandalised by clergy abuse’
Belfast Telegraph – Archbishop Charles J Brown told Mass goers in Dublin the Pope knows the recent years have been difficult for Catholic believers in Ireland. The new papal nuncio maintained the Holy Father has been relentless in trying to make changes within the Church …
Read more – http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/local-national/republic-of-ireland/pope-scandalised-by-clergy-abuse-16119599.html

Pope set on dealing with abuse, says nuncio
Irish Times – “Were it not for the faith of Ireland, I would not be a Catholic today.” He recalled he had worked with the then cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict, in the Roman Curia, the central administration of the Catholic Church.
Read more – http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2012/0220/1224312051694.html

Vatican’s envoy to Ireland: Pope ‘relentless and consistent’ in tackling child …
Washington Post – Pope Benedict has been relentless and consistent on this front,” Brown told worshippers and diplomatic guests at a service at Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral. The first-time diplomat faces a delicate repair job in Ireland, a traditionally Catholic nation that …
Read more – http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/vaticans-envoy-to-ireland-pope-relentless-and-consistent-in-tackling-child-abuse-in-church/2012/02/19/gIQAjmNMNR_story.html

You don’t have to believe in God to cherish the Church
The Independent – Aggressive secularists and atheists love pointing to the horrors that have been done in the name of religion, from the Inquisition to the Troubles in Northern Ireland. But they are strangely silent on the horrors perpetrated by atheist regimes, …
Read more – http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/mary-ann-sieghart/mary-ann-sieghart-you-dont-have-to-believe-in-god-to-cherish-the-church-7216680.html

Names of boys burned out of care home released
Irish Times – After 90 years, a list has emerged containing the names of 21 of the boys who were briefly taken into care by Barnardo’s in London in October 1922. The list was found in the files of the children’s charity following an enquiry from The Irish Times . The boys’ orphanage at Ballyconree, Clifden, Co Galway, was burnt down by anti-Treaty republican forces in July 1922 for allegedly teaching the boys to be “pro-British”. The outrage received little coverage at the time. It was overshadowed by other momentous events convulsing a country in the midst of a Civil War sparked by conflicting attitudes to the Anglo-Irish Treaty which led to the creation of the Irish Free State.
Read more – http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2012/0220/1224312052744.html

Irish mental health helpline calls soar
Belfast Telegraph – Calls to a mental health helpline soared by almost 60% last month. St Patrick’s University Hospital said it heard from 213 people in crisis in January – compared to 134 in January 2011. Staff on its support and information line took a total 1,853 calls throughout the year…The Support and Information service is available Monday to Friday 01 249 3333, with a voicemail and call-back facility.Alternatively anyone in crisis can call 1Life Suicide Prevention Helpline on 1800 247 100 or The Samaritans on 1850 60 90 90.

Read more – http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/local-national/republic-of-ireland/mental-health-helpline-calls-soar-16119643.html

Tánaiste: We’re not going to reverse Vatican embassy decision
TheJournal.ie – The Tánaiste reiterated that the government will review the decision when Ireland’s financial circumstances improve.
Read more – http://www.thejournal.ie/tanaiste-were-not-going-to-reverse-vatican-embassy-decision-360471-Feb2012/

Archbishop calls for ‘renewed’ and ‘more humble’ Catholic church
Thejournal.ie – Archbishop Martin has welcomed the Vatican’s new Papal Nuncio and called on him to work with the Catholic hierarchy in Ireland for a “more humble” church. Martin’s call came in his welcoming of the new Papal Nuncio Archbishop Charles Brown to …
Read more – http://www.thejournal.ie/archbishop-calls-for-renewed-and-more-humble-catholic-church-359974-Feb2012/

Call for organ donation opt-out in NI
BBC – John McCallister, the deputy leader of the UUP, calls for research on an opt out system for organ donation.
Read more –  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-17089597