Irish government consults on Diaspora Policy review

Government of Ireland - Emigrant Support Programme logo
Government of Ireland - Emigrant Support Programme logo

The Irish Government released a ground-breaking, world-leading Diaspora Policy (read it here) in 2015.

In short, the Government laid out a strategy to involve Irish diaspora groups in the life of the island of Ireland. It aims to make welcome groups and individuals who have been -or felt- excluded. After three+ years of implementation, the Irish Government is reviewing the policy. This review will ensure it is fit for purpose and as inclusionary as it aimed to be. You can read the Review it has drawn together thus far, here.

The Liverpool Irish Fetsival is funded by the Government’s Emigrant Support Programme. Consequently, we have been asked to help publicise the two (4 July 2019) sessions held in the North of England. We believe these are important sessions and as they are public sessions we encourage you to attend. We think they will be of partciular interest to those with connections in Anglo-Irish communities, diaspora politics or global freedoms/equity to attend.

Diaspora Policy

The Irish Government have stated:

In a changing world, how do we continue to connect with people who feel a connection to Ireland? How can we support and strengthen those long-established Irish communities abroad, including many across the UK? How are these communities changing, and what are their needs now? Such questions not only represent a challenge, but more importantly an exciting opportunity to engage with and reflect the input of Irish communities in the UK.

Irish Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development Ciarán Cannon, T.D., will host a public meeting on Ireland’s new Diaspora Policy, expected to be published in 2020. We want to hear your views on how we can improve our support for, and connections with, the Irish community of which you are a part.

Consultation sessions

As a result of the statement above, the Government are now holding consultations. Below are details of the sessions -as laid out by the Irish Government- and further information on the Policy. Please note that each session is followed by an information session on the Common Travel Area (CTA*), too. If you wish to attend either sessions, please register using the Eventbrite links provided .

  • 12pm-2.30pm, Thurs 4 July 2019, Leeds Irish Centre (York Road, Leeds LS9 9NT)

Book using this link:

  • 6pm-8.30pm, Thurs 4 July 2019, Irish World Heritage Centre (1 IrishTown Way, Manchester M8 0AE)

Book using this link:

Other sessions are being held across the UK and in Ireland. You can see more details about those here. Please also note the Common Travel Area session, to be held on 5 July in Livepool (details below in the section *CTA).

London sessions include:

Workshop-style meetings are a great opportunity for the Irish community in the UK to have their say. Come and tell the Government of Ireland how it can improve its support for, and connections with, the Irish diaspora.   Meeting topics to be explored include:


  • does Ireland continue to connect with people in the UK who feel a connection to Ireland?
  • can Ireland support and strengthen those long-established Irish communities in the UK?
  • are these communities changing, and what are their needs now?

Further details on the Diaspora Policy consultation process can be found online at


Under the Common Travel Area (CTA) Irish and British citizens can move freely and reside in either jurisdiction. They enjoy associated rights and entitlements including access to employment, healthcare, education, social benefits and the right to vote in certain elections. The Common Travel Area pre-dates Irish and UK membership of the EU and is not dependent on it. The Government of Ireland and the UK Government have signed a Memorandum of Understanding‌, reaffirming their commitment to maintaining the CTA in all circumstances.

Liverpool session

Ambassador Adrian O’Neill and colleagues from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade are hosting a CTA information session at the Liverpool Irish Centre (Boundary Lane, Liverpool L6 5JG). It will take place on Fri 5 July at 12.30pm. If you would like to book a place on this session please contact Maureen Morrison on +44 (0)151 263 1808 and pass the invitation to any contacts who may be interested.