Monthly Archives: December 2013

New Years TV advertising campaign on 50,000 undocumented Irish to go Coast to Coast in the US

The  Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform  in conjugation with the The Ireland America Association have secured air time on  the ‘Today’s Ireland’ TV channel of the MHz Network.The advert will encourage action on immigration reform to resolve the plight of the 50,000 undocumented Irish in the United States to began transmission this week.

The Advert will be broadcast on MHz Network which reaches 38million homes across the United States. The ‘Today’s Ireland ‘ channel MHz Network features news and contemporary drama and features from the island of Ireland. Last year in March Taoiseach Enda Kenny launched the Today’s Ireland channel with a pre-recorded opening address.

The advert will encourage the law makers in the US Congress to enact immigration reform in 2014.
The advert features extracts from speeches of both President Kennedy and Regan Who describe their ancestors journey to America. Senator Daly who is the chairman of the Ireland America Association informs the viewers that ‘ if Presidents Regan and Kennedy’s ancestors wanted to immigrate to America today they could not do so legally’

‘When the Ireland America Association inform members of Congress that there are 50,000 undocumented Irish living in the shadows in America they are shocked. We inform them that for every 1 undocumented Irish person in the US there are 10 affected at home, between parents, brothers sisters and immediate family members. That’s 500,000 Irish people and families on this island or 1 in 10 of the population who are anxious to get immigration reform in 2014’

The Ireland America Association is made up of former and serving members of the Oireachtas, members of local authorities throughout Ireland and members of the Northern Assembly

The presidents of the association include
Former Taoiseach and EU ambassador to the US John Bruton
Former Ministers for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern and Dick Spring.


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“Recognition of Irish Sign Language for the Deaf Community Bill” to ensure equal rights for the deaf community in Ireland

The ‘Irish Sign Language for the Deaf Community Bill’ will ensure equal rights for the deaf community in Ireland and will guarantee that the government no longer continues to breach the Good Friday Agreement. 

The main provisions of the bill include

* require public bodies and government departments to implement action plans for ISL

* to permit the use of Irish Sign Language in Legal proceedings

* to provide for regulations of ISL interpreters

* to establish the Irish Sign Language council: to provide for the establishment of registers

Irish Sign Language Bill First Page002

Senator Daly said “As citizens, the members of the deaf community must be guaranteed the same rights and access to services as everyone else. Sadly that is not the case.”

Currently Members of the deaf community are not able to  communicate with government agencies and the medical profession without encountering enormously difficulties.

“This bill will require all state bodies to put in place ISL interrupters as a right rather than the current ad hoc system” said Senator Daly.

The lack of recognition for Irish Sign Language ISL is also a breech of the Good Friday Agreement. Under the agreement ISL was to be officially recognised by both the North and the South. While the northern assembly has put in place provisions for ISL.

Senator Daly commented “amazingly 15 years after the Good Friday Agreement and this week when we see the US special envoy dealing with legacy issues of flags, parades and justice of that agreement the current government and successive governments in the south have failed to deal with this issue which is also part of the Good Friday Agreement and failed to pass legislation that would allow for the deaf community to interact with the government and it’s agencies.

Senator Mark Daly has been allowed by the Government to published the bill and will have it debated in the new year. The bill will also ensure that there is an accreditation process for Irish Sign Language interrupters. This would prevent a situation similar to the one which arose at Presidents Mandela Memorial in Johannesburg where an unqualified sign language interrupter, preformed the signing for the memorial service.

Senator Mark Daly was nominated by the Irish Deaf Society to run for Seanad Eireann in 2007 and 2011

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Just prerecorded a piece for Newstalk on the hope that Christmas 2014 will be the year the 50,000 undocumented Irish can come home

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Christmas 2014 needs to be the year when the 50,000 undocumented Irish can come home

Senator Mark Daly the spokesperson for the Irish Overseas and the Diaspora has called for a renewed effort by the Government to ensure that those Irish who are undocumented will be home next year to celebrate Christmas with their loved ones, families and friends.


Senator Mark Daly and Paul Ryan
Seantor Daly commented “With the US Senate having passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill it is time for the Taoiseach and Tainiste to redouble efforts with the members of the house of representative in the United States to advance the cause of legalisation for those Irish living in the shadows in the America.This time of year we should remember those Irish in the United States who because of their status are unable to come back to Ireland”.

Earlier this year,Senator Daly released the first ever policy by any political party on the Irish Overseas and Diaspora, which included the call for a Minister for the Irish Overseas and Diaspora and votes for emigrants,

Senator Daly is a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and was part of a delegation who went to Washington DC in October where they met with members of Congress and attended the White House to hear President Obama announce his push for immigration reform.

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Connecting with the Irish Diaspora


Henry Healy and I appeared on the Christmas Special of an American talk show to talk with Pierce about connecting with the Irish diaspora situated in America. You can watch the clip here.

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