Galway Travelers renews campaign to "build bridges"


Do people have positive experiences of traveler's culture? Why has an 18-year pledge to update hate crimes legislation not been updated? And should the ethnicity of travelers be legally supported?

These are issues the Galway Traveler Movement (GTM) wants to explore in the coming months as part of new "bridge building initiatives" at local and national level.

GTM deputy coordinator Bridget Kelly said she was in contact with other nongovernmental organizations, including the Irish Traveler Movement, to lobby for the legal recognition of ethnicity status offered by taoiseach Enda Kenny in 2017.

The organization believes measures such as the September takeover by former Education Minister Richard Bruton to ensure that the culture and history of the traveler are recognized in the primary and secondary school curriculum should be followed by other departments to support ethnic status.


"Otherwise, it's just symbolic, as we saw in the presidential election debate," said Annie McDonagh, a member of the WGW East Side.

"Everyone seems surprised by the outcome, but we're not," said Mrs. McDonagh about the presidential election, which saw second-place presidential candidate Peter Casey. He caused controversy during the campaign with his comments on travelers, including his denial of the traveler's ethnicity.


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