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NewsIs it time to scrap Article 41.2?

Is it time to scrap Article 41.2?

Last Monday was International Women’s day commemorating the cultural, political, and socioeconomic achievements of women. Yet, our Constitution still contains Article 41.2 which contradicts these very achievements:

“The State recognises that by her life within the home, woman gives to the State a support without which the common good cannot be achieved. The State shall endeavour to ensure that mothers shall not be obliged by economic necessity to engage in labour to the neglect of their duties in the home.”

Women and mother’s duties in the home? Yet there is no mention of men and father’s duties.

Last year, a Citizen’s Assembly was convened to consider the offending Article. A majority of the 99 members recommended that it should be deleted from the Constitution. The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission has recommended replacing the Article with “a new provision that recognises the contributions made by family life and carers to our society”.

Article 41.2 was inserted into the Constitution in 1937. At the time, the voting age was 21. Therefore, this Article was inserted by people born before 1916, before we had even won our independence from the British empire. Yet, more than 100 years later, this echo from the past encouraging women not to “neglect their duties in the home” is still with us.

At OneBigSwitch, we have some insights into men’s and women’s duties in the home. OneBigSwitch members are split almost exactly 50:50 male to female. Switchers are also split 50:50. So it looks as if in the real world, Irish consumers share many administrative duties in the home, such finding energy, insurance, banking and broadband providers, evenly across the genders.


What do you think? Should we finally get rid of Article 41.2? 

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Is it time to scrap Article 41.2?

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Seamus
Seamus from D commented:

I see people here saying to get rid of this article without knowing what it is about. this is a very important protection for Irish families put into the constitution to protect family units above all else. Unfortunately you are assuming the word mother should mean woman and therefore you are talking about removing the article - making out that it is against womans rights but far from the truth. It is to protect the family unit - unfortunately, our government does not follow the laws of this article in our constitution in regard to treating all family units fairly and equally. the only thing that needs to change in this article is to make it gender nutrel, wheather its the father or the mother. As other commenters have said - why is one big switch involved in this - who has asked you to get involved? I believe they are planning on irradicating this Article while we are in lock down? Any constitutional changes are to be done through the election box or has this changed in ireland? 

Seamus
Seamus from D commented:

Believe we have moved beyond this kind of thinking. .Get rid of it. 

Shari
Shari from DL commented:

One big constitutional switch🤷🏻‍♂️Stick to utility bills which you didn't find me better value than I did by shopping around!!!! 

Shari
Shari from DL commented:

This article was written at a time when preservation of the family meant a rigidly defined and tightly circumscribed set of roles and duties based in Biblical ideals that even most Christians rightly no longer subscribe to. This is no longer the case, and the article is irrelevant and obsolete. It is as much a danger to the running of a decent society as running an obsolete machine no longer fit for purpose is a danger to any environment in which it is operated. 

Declan
Declan from C commented:

No No No Leave the constitution alone 

Elizabeth
Elizabeth from C commented:

Yes get it removed ,or replace it with all Genders,it is used against men in legal proceedings against them and children. 

Elizabeth
Elizabeth from C commented:

Yes get it removed ,or replace it with all Genders,it is used against men in legal proceedings against them and children. 

Anonymous
Anonymous from LH commented:

No I am a full time working mother to 4 sons who's father takes no part in parenting. 

Anonymous
Anonymous from C commented:

No I don't think we should get rid of article 41.2. While some families delegate childrearing to fathers, grandparents or childminders, there are still plenty of us mothers who rear our kids fulltime, walk them to and from school, shop, cook, clean, garden, cut hair, teach, organise playdates and parties, counsel, etc. We do this for the love of our families and a good homelife. What kids often want most is your love, presence, fun and attention. Some women manage to work, but for many childrearing is a full-time job with no renumeration obviously. Careers are put on hold or reinvented through further studies/training when we do return to work, often starting at base pay levels again. The value given to rearing babies into emotionally mature, secure, level-headed individuals benefits them, those they meet throughout life and society as a whole. When relationships break down, the women is still nearly always left holding the baby, or rearing the kids. So yes, mothers who rear ther children full-time should be protected as article 41.2 states, and fathers should be responsible for financially providing for their families, whether they reside with them or not, and only the State (taxpayer) as a last resort. Breastfeeding is much easier to do with full-time, attachment parenting, as each time the baby puts its mouth to the breast, it dictates what type of milk it needs. If the baby comes in contact with a disease, fever or is teething, it gets instant antibodies in the mothers milk to help fight whatever it has been exposed to, or comfort. Research links breastfeeding to all sorts of health benefits-lower obesity, better gut health, and a higher IQ. Breastfeeding can be exhausting but in the long run you end up with secure, well-attached kids who won't burden our stressed healthcare system. It's just one traditional way of many childrearing strategies that still works for many. Our constitution recognises the value of this. Louise, seperated-mother-of- three in Cork 

louis
louis from LH commented:

Yes, It is time to scrap Article 41.2. Louis Coetzee 

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