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Assembly Co-Chairmen meet local Irish Groups in Brighton

Added 24-Oct-2011

The Co-Chairmen of the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly, Lord Cope of Berkeley and Joe McHugh TD, today met with representatives from the local Irish community in Brighton. The meeting took place during the plenary session of the Assembly that is taking place in the Grand Hotel, Monday-Tuesday.

Lord Cope and Deputy McHugh met with Ty Galvin, Chair of the Brighton Irish Community Group, and a number of representatives from the organisation. The two Co-Chairmen were accompanied by Lord Dubs who authored the Assembly's report on the Irish Community in Britain last year.

Speaking about the meeting, the Co-Chairmen reiterated the Assembly's commitment to the Irish community in Britain and acknowledged the funding provided by both the Irish Government and local authorities across Britain to many community and voluntary organisations from for services that support vulnerable Irish people.

Deputy McHugh commented, "At a time when both the Irish and British Governments are being forced to make significant savings, it is important that the crucial support to the Irish community in Britain is not sacrificed. Over the last decade, a lot of work and time has been invested in supporting those Irish people who have experienced hardship and difficulty in Britain. It is vital that that support remains.

"This will help these organisations to continue to carry out all the good work that they undertake in communities the length and breadth of Britain, where they remain important ambassadors for Ireland.

"For that reason, the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly last year undertook a major report and produced series of recommendations for the two Governments. These included:

• The provision of funding for a specific survey on the needs of the elderly Irish
• The need to keep the Hammersmith Irish Cultural Centre operating at its present location
• The need to keep and monitor data on the Irish as an ethnic community in Britain
• The continuation of the provision of vital services to the Irish traveller community in Britain

"At today's meeting we briefed the Brighton Irish Community Group on our work, and pledged our support for the vital services they provide for people from Ireland living on the South Coast."


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