Cllr resigns over maternity fiasco

by Gazette Reporter
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A SOUTH DUBLIN Co Cllr resigned on International Women’s Day due to the lack of maternity leave available for female politicians.

On Monday Clare O’Byrne of the Green Party stepped down from her role after the birth of her first child.

Ireland currently does not have legal provisions in place for TDs, senators or councillors to take maternity leave. The Government is in a race to amend this before Justice Minister Helen McEntee is due her first child to ensure she does not have to resign her post.

Ms O’Byrne claims that the lack of maternity leave for elected representatives is a serious obstacle.

Minister Helen McEntee

She said: “It’s quite embarrassing I believe for Ireland.

“Since I took on the role of Councillor in February 2020, I’ve been committed to bringing about positive change in my locality for the benefit of the environment, the community and our children’s future,” she continued.

“It’s been both a rewarding and challenging role, which I have enjoyed immensely. Unfortunately, with the arrival of my firstborn, I have come to realise the impossibility of balancing my role as a new mother with that of a councillor.

“The unavailability of maternity leave for elected representatives is a serious obstacle that prevents women from running for and remaining in office.

“Things need to change, not only for my daughter or the next generation of women in politics, but this generation.”

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