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Commencement of the Adoption (Amendment) Act 2017 

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Treoir welcomes the many positive changes introduced by the Adoption Act 2017, in particular, the provision allowing step-parent adoption without the peculiar requirement for the biological parent to adopt his or her own child. Until  now the only way for a step-parent to adopt a child was to apply jointly with the child’s natural parent.  

The best interests of the child will be the paramount consideration in relation to any adoption matter, application or proceedings. The Act also makes it compulsory that the views of the child should be ascertained and be given due weight by the Adoption Authority or by the court.

Treoir Press Release Commencement of the Adoption (Amendment) Act 2017

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                 Budget 2018 at Glance 

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Social welfare payments and allowances

  • Christmas bonus payment of 85% to be paid to all social welfare recipients in 2017.
  • From last week of March, €5 per week increase in all weekly social welfare payments, including disability allowance, carer’s allowance, Jobseekers’ Allowance and State pension. 
  • €20 increase in the earnings disregard for the One Parent Family Payment and Jobseekers’ Transitional scheme.
  • The threshold for the Family Income Supplement will rise by €10 per week for families with three children. €2 per week rise in the rate of the qualified child payment.
  • There will be a €2.50 increase in the Telephone Support Allowance for those receiving the Living Alone and Fuel allowances.
  • The home carer credit will rise by €100 to €1,200.

Download the Budget Factsheet from the Department or Employment Affairs& Social Protection. 

Housing 

  • The Housing Assistance Payment Scheme will increase by €149m. Funding for homeless services will increase by €18m to more than €116m
  • 4,000 extra social housing units to be delivered next year. 
  • Commitment to accelerate the delivery of social housing from 2019.
  • Extra €500m for direct building programme to see 3,000 additional new build social houses by 2021.

Health

  • Reduction in prescription charges for all medical card holders under 70 from €2.50 to €2 per item.
  • The monthly cap drops from €25 to €20, with the threshold for the Drugs Payment Scheme dropping from €144 to €134.

Tax and USC

  • Entry point for single earners to increase from €33,800 to €34,550.
  • Point at which income earner attracts higher rate of income tax to rise next year by €750 per annum.
  • Entry point to USC to remain at €13,000.
  • 2.5% USC rate to be reduced to 2% with the ceiling for the new rate increased from €18,772 to €19,372.
  • 5% USC rate reduced to 4.75%. 

Mortgage Interest Relief

  • Mortgage interest relief will be cut next year in a move that will affect about 300,000 homeowners. The relief for people with loans from 2004-2012 is being continued to 2020 but at just 75% the rate in 2018, 50% in 2019 and 25% in 2020.

 Cigarettes

 The excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes will rise by 50 cents. 

  • The excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes will rise by 50 cents. 

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Treoir welcomes Damien Peelo as our new CEO

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The Council of Treoir is delighted to announce the appointment of Damien Peelo as the new Chief Executive of Treoir with effect from 1 July 2017.

Dr Ruth Barrington, the Chairperson of Treoir, welcoming the appointment, said that
The Council is very pleased that a person with such commitment to social justice and experience of the voluntary sector as Damien has joined Treoir as Chief Executive”.
She added that the members of Council and the staff of Treoir are looking forward to working with him to promote the interests of unmarried parents and their children.

Damien Peelo is a graduate of University of Ulster where he studied Youth, Community work and social policy. He has over 20 years’ experience working in the community and voluntary sector with a diverse range of communities.
He was formerly the Director of the COPD Support Ireland and the Irish Traveller Movement. Damien has worked on many campaigns with communities to tackle discrimination, poverty, inequality and exclusion. He is a board member of the Ballyfermot Traveller Action Project and has been a Ministerial appointee to a number of governmental policy committees.

Damien Peelo


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Dr. Dermot Walsh

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All associated with Treoir were deeply saddened to hear of the death of Dr Dermot Walsh. Dermot was one of the founder members of Treoir in 1976, and the organisation's first chairperson. In recognition of his contribution to Treoir, Dermot was made a lifetime honorary member and honorary President of the organisation.

Dr Ruth Barrington, the Chairperson of Treoir, expressed her deep sadness on hearing of Dermot's death. "We were delighted that Dermot attended the event to mark the 40th anniversary of Treoir in the Mansion House on 7th December last year. At that event, we launched the history of Treoir - Towards Equality for Unmarried Parents and Their Children 1976- 2016 which records the extraordinary contribution Dermot made to improving the lives of unmarried parents and their children.

Treoir extends its deepest sympathy to his wife, Eilís Walsh, on her great loss.




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Pat Kenny interviews Treoir

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Click here to Listen to Pat Kenny interviewing Beatrice Cronin of Treoir about new rights for unmarried parents.




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Important Information for Cohabiting Fathers

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From the 18th January 2017, a non-marital father will automatically become a joint legal guardian of his child if he has cohabited with the child's mother for a minimum of 12 consecutive months, including at least 3 months after the child's birth. This groundbreaking provision of the Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 comes into effect today, as the 12 consecutive months must occur after the date of its commencement on the 18th of January last year.

If you would like to see Treoir's press release regarding this important provision of the 2015 Act, please follow this link.




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1976 - 2016: Celebrating Treoir's 40th Anniversary

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Treoir is looking forward to celebrating its 40th anniversary tomorrow 7th of December at the Mansion House on Dawson Street, Dublin 2.

In 1976 Treoir was founded as the Federation of Services for Unmarried Parents and their Children. As Treoir celebrates its 40th anniversary, the vision and foresight of the early pioneers deserve recognition for the significant progress that has been achieved since its establishment including:

  • Over the years the number of enquiries to the National Specialist Information Service increased dramatically. Parents, extended family members and professionals were the main users of the service
  • The nature of enquiries to the National Specialist Information Service has changed over time
  • Developments in technology changed the way in which Treoir services were delivered and the Treoir website is extensively used
  • Conferences and workshops were held over the years to address issues concerning unmarried parents and their children
  • Research projects were undertaken which explored the reality of lives of unmarried parents and helped to inform policy
  • Legislation impacting on unmarried parents and their children developed significantly over the period
  • The adoption process has undergone radical change
  • Treoir developed a set of principles in relation to children and their right to identity
  • The additional needs of young parents are being recognised and the Teen Parents Support Programme was established to meet their needs

Nowadays, unmarried families still face discrimination in our laws and procedures. The increasing prevalence of births outside of marriage, greater tolerance for social change and the increased complexity of modern family types make Treoir's mission more relevant than ever.

As Treoir celebrates and enters its fifth decade it will continue to represent the best interest of unmarried families in Ireland and work towards equality for unmarried parents and their children.

Click here to read " Treoir - Towards Equality for Unmarried Parents and Their Children 1976- 2016" a history of the first 40 years of Treoir The Federation of Services for Unmarried Parents and Their Children.

 

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Newly updated Information Pack!

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Treoir's Information Pack for unmarried parents has recently been updated with new legislation and with the most recent budget changes.

This Pack contains information on legal issues relevant to all unmarried parents, i.e. living together or apart, both opposite and same sex. The legal issues include, information on: guardianship, access, maintenance, establishing paternity, the rights of cohabiting parents and more. The Pack also contains information on social welfare entitlements and other financial matters.

information pack

Download Pack

To request a copy of the Pack e-mail us at info@treoir.ie, or contact us on 01-6700120 / LoCall 1890 252 084.

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TREOIR's Pre-Budget Submission 2017

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Supporting Financially Vulnerable Families

SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Reinstate the supports for one-parent families in order to address the current high rates of child poverty.
  • At a minimum, social welfare payments and the associated secondary payments should not be cut or reduced.
  • Extend FIS to lone parents in receipt of Jobseekers Transitional Payment subject to certain criteria.
  • Review working hours eligibility of FIS to align it with current trends on part-time working arrangements.
  • Introduce additional interim measures for lone parents in part-time employment who cannot increase their hours to avail of FIS.
  • Allow for flexibility in the payment of FIS in the event of changes of income or working hours for short periods.
  • Apply the same Income Limits for the Back to School and Footwear Allowance to lone parents or couples (similar to FIS).
  • Extend the eligibility of the Widowed or Surviving Civil Partner Grant to cohabitants and to other surviving guardian who have one or more dependent children living with them
  • Monitor rent supplement allowance limits every six months in areas of high demand and adjust accordingly
  • Allow people who transfer from Rent Supplement to the Housing Assistance Payment to remain in the social housing list, which is a disincentive if there are concerns about longer-term security of tenure.
  • Reinstate Bin Waiver Schemes for One Parent Family Payment recipients
  • Grant lone parents in full-time education the Back to Education Allowance without discretion
  • Review the eligibility rules of the SUSI grant to better facilitate lone parents' care duties.
  • Introduce a single childcare subvention scheme for single parents who need childcare for children aged up to 12 years in order to participate in education, training and work.
  • Introduce additional good quality after-school childcare to support lone parents.

View Treoir's Pre-Budget Submission 2017




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Paternity Leave and Benefit Bill 2016

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The bill has been signed into law - 29.07.2016

As a result of this legislation fathers will be entitled two weeks of paternity leave and two weeks of paternity benefit, for babies born on or after 1 September 2016. New fathers may start the combined package of paternity leave and paternity benefit at any time within the first 6 months following birth or adoption of a child.

See here for further information.





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TREOIR Information Leaflets

Updated edition now available!

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Following the commencement of the Children and Family Relationships Act 2015, Treoir's information leaflets have been updated.

The following leaflets are now available: Custody Access, Guardianship, Maintenance, Establishing Paternity, Cohabiting Parents, Unmarried Fathers, Passports, Child Abduction and Step-parent Adoption.

All publications may be ordered from Treoir or downloaded from the 'Publications' section of this website (see this page). If you work with unmarried parents and would like to order multiple copies for your organisation, order from info@treoir.ie.

   




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A new supply of 'Baby on Board' badges has arrived!

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Treoir conducted an information campaign in 2013 to provide information for expectant unmarried parents. The campaign highlighted key information on issues including birth registration, cohabitation, shared parenting and establishing paternity. To promote the campaign, we developed 10 Top Tips for unmarried and about-to-be parents and produced a specially branded "Baby on Board" badge (...and we now have a new supply!) which pregnant women could use to gain a seat on public transport. Also, If you are a service provider and have a waiting room you could request a lovely colourful poster produced by Treoir with the message "Please offer a seat to someone who needs it more than you do".

CLICK HERE to order a badge / poster and read our top ten tips on important information which should be considered by unmarried and about to be parents.




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New Legislation Commenced

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Some sections of The Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 were commenced on 18th January 2016. This new legislation will directly affect many of our users.

The following are some of the changes:

    The following are some of the changes:
  • An unmarried father who is cohabiting with the mother of his child for at least one year, 3 months of which are following the birth of the child, will automatically have guardianship rights in respect of his child. This is not retrospective: only cohabitation after the commencement date (18/1/2016) will be taken into account. See fathers section
  • Step-parents, grandparents and those who have acted in loco parentis may be eligible to apply for guardianship. See guardianship section
  • The process whereby grandparents can apply for access to their grandchildren has been simplified. See grandparents section
  • Enforcement procedures have been put in place where someone is in breach of a court order. See 'Access and Custody of Children'
  • A non-parent cohabitant may be obliged to pay maintenance in respect of a child he/she has been caring for. See maintenance section

The relevant sections of our website have been updated. If you are unclear about any matter please contact an information officer on 01-6700120 or e-mail info@treoir.ie with your contact details and a member of our information team will be happy to contact you.

 




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Mother and Baby Homes Commission of Investigation

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Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes and a Representative Sample of County Homes has been established. The Commission would like to hear from anyone who was resident in or who worked in any of the Mother and Baby Homes or County Homes that are the subject of the investigation.

The Commission would also like to hear from people who have personal knowledge about the homes, for example, family members of residents, regular visitors or those who supplied services to the homes. Written submissions are welcome and the Confidential Committee will also meet in person with a number of former residents, employees and others with relevant information to hear their experiences.

Confidential Freephone 1800 80-66-88 (from outside of the Republic of Ireland: 00 353 1 6445088). The opening hours for the confidential phone line are Monday to Friday (excluding Irish Bank Holidays) 10am to 1pm and 2pm to 4.30pm.

Treoir will make a submission in due course.

We would encourage those who have a story to tell or observations to make to contact the Commission www.mbhcoi.ie

See Interim Report from the Commission of Investigation (Mother and Baby Homes and certain related Matters).





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General Scheme and Heads of the Adoption

(Information and Tracing) Bill 2015

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In July 2015 The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs published the General Scheme and Heads of The Adoption (Information and Tracing) Bill 2015. Provisions contained in the Bill will give adopted people a legal right to information about their birth parents. Article 8 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child states that parties undertake to respect the right of the child to (preserve) his/her identity. The new Adoption Bill if enacted will go a long way toward ensuring that the rights of adopted children are respected in this way.




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Compulsory registration of father's name

on child's birth cert is now law

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- This legislation has not yet commenced - WATCH THIS SPACE!

The Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2014 will, once the legislation has been commenced, for the first time in Ireland, place a duty on unmarried parents to register the father's name on the birth certificate of their child. It is a child's fundamental human right to have the names of both parents on his/her birth certificate.

Following on this new legislation, if a mother attends without the father to register her child's birth, the Registrar will ask her for contact details of the father. The Registrar will then make "all reasonable efforts" to contact the father and invite him to attend the Registrar's Office within 28 days in order to complete the registration. Only in exceptional cases, where "compelling reasons" are provided, will the father's name be omitted.

If parents cannot agree a surname for the child, the birth will be registered but no surname will be assigned to the child until agreement is reached.

Read more in Treoir's press release

See Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2014

We will keep readers informed of commencement date on our website and you canfollow us on Facebook to be kept up to date on developments.




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Watch them Grow

Unmarried-cohabitant and Solo parenthood in Ireland

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Watch Them Grow, a significant research study by Dr. Owen Corrigan, commissioned by TREOIR and funded by the HSE Crisis Pregnancy Programme has been launched. The report gives us a greater understanding of the lives of children in different family types. The research was undertaken using the Growing Up in Ireland study data, a major longitudinal study of children which commenced in 2006, and collected information on 11,134 children and their parents in Ireland when the children were nine months and three years.

Download full report here

Download Key Findings


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That's Men:
Non-resident fathers' support is vital
for children's development

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How much do fathers matter when they are not living with the mothers of their children? See Padraig O'Morain's article in Irish Times Health supplement (10.11.2015) which reports on the findings of Treoir's 'Watch them Grow' publication.

Read article here

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Contact us today with your questions. LoCall 1890 252 084 or 01 6700120 if calling from a mobile

 

LoCall 1890 252 084
Call us today with your questions
- Phoning from a landline?
    Use our LoCall No. 1890-252-084

- Phoning from a mobile?
    Use our landline No. 01-6700120
Lines are open from 10am to 1pm
2pm to 4pm Monday to Friday
Send us an e-mail requesting a call back to info@treoir.ie
We provide a free, confidential, specialist information service for unmarried parents, living together or apart, their extended families and those working with them.

Information is available on Legal, Social Welfare and Parenting issues.

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Watch this video by All Families Matter aimed at raising awareness of the need to recognise all families in the constitution, including unmarried families.

 

  

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