Equality and Human Rights

I am seeking equality proofing of social and economic policies and am working to support a rights-based approach to health, housing and education and legislation to ensure equality of access to these services.

I am continuing to advocate for equality between women and men and for the closing of the pay and pension gap, quality affordable childcare, resources to tackle violence against women, and repeal of the 8th Amendment. I am working to promote equality of representation in all areas of national life, including arts, sport, STEM and our educational institutions.  

Related Stories

Cross-party cooperation makes significant progress on domestic violence legislation

The Civil Engagement Group in Seanad Éireann welcomes that the critically important Domestic Violence Bill 2017 has today passed committee stage in the upper house. Among the amendments agreed at committee stage today were the creation of the offence of coercive control, and the acceptance that the closer the abuser is to the abused, the more serious that offence is. This was achieved thanks to the close cooperation of Senators from Fianna Fáil, Sinn Féin, Labour, the Civil Engagement Group, and independent senators, as well as constructive engagement from Minister David Stanton and his officials in the Department of Justice and Equality.

Failure to address glaring inequality on pensions in Budget 2018 is indefensible - Government must face up to its responsibilities towards older women

Senator Alice-Mary Higgins seeks special debate on gender and equality aspects of Budget 2018

Senator Higgins said “The failure to address this glaring inequality on pensions in Budget 2018 is indefensible, particularly given Government promises on gender and equality proofing of the budget. I am calling on Pascal Donohoe to allocate additional funds to address this before the Finance and Social Welfare Bills pass through the Oireachtas. Senator Higgins has also called for a special Seanad debate on gender and equality aspects of Budget 2018, in particular the failure to address the glaring pension inequality within the contributory state pension system.

Amended Bill Sets Out Pathway to Long Overdue Open Adoption in Ireland

“Open adoption allows for more honest and compassionate recognition of the complexity of many family situations,” says Senator Alice Mary Higgins.

The Adoption (Amendment) Bill 2016 passed through the final stages of the Dáil this evening, Thursday 13th July 2017. This Bill, which contains a number of progressive proposals on adoption, also contains a ground-breaking amendment brought in by Senator Alice-Mary Higgins in the Seanad.