Even has been no specific strategy to address Traveller

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Last updated: December 17, 2019

Even though travelers or gypsies are a very small part ofIrelands population (less than one percent), They do unfortunately experiencelots of disadvantages with relation to getting access to healthcare, procuringhousing and also establishing a stable job for themselves. In the census taken in 2011 it stated that just over 11percent of travelers lived in a mobile home or a caravan, this accommodation isextremely likely to have overcrowding which had a figure of over 80 percent inthe 2011 census and also another extremely important resource that travelersalso lack is their lack of access to broadband, in the 2011 census only 9percent of travelers mobile homes or caravans had proper internet access(broadband etc.) One of the biggest differences and issues with regards tosocial inclusion of travelers is how difficult it is for them to find stableemployment, Espicially between the ages of 25 and 65 in 2011 the levels ofunemployment of travelers in this age group reached as high as 82 percent, whenwe compare this with the rate of unemployment in the settled community Irelandwhich at this time peaked at 17 percent we can see that this is another effectof how travelers are being socially excluded in Ireland. Since the National Traveller Health Strategy 2002–2005 andthe National Intercultural Health Strategy 2007–2012, there has been nospecific strategy to address Traveller health inequalities. The health pillarof the National Traveller and Roma Integration Strategy (2011) described thecurrent infrastructure but brought no new proposals.

The latter has beencriticised for not involving Travellers in its development, being fragmented inits approach and lacking co-ordination with other state polices, with no fundinglinked to actions and no provision for monitoring of targets (Pavee Point,2014b; European Commission, 2012 and 2014). The Department of Health’s NationalTraveller Health Advisory Committee has not met since 2012. The HSE NationalTraveller Health Advisory Forum, established in 2007, continues to work withTraveller health units and Traveller organisations to promote Traveller health,but this still isn’t enough for travelers to be conceived as a sociallyincluded group As recently as the 1960s, Travellers were identified as’itinerants’ in policy documents; the aim was to ignore their culturaltraditions and to corralthem into housing projects. Beginning in the 1980s, thestate began investing in Travellers, with ‘provision for education,accommodation, health, community development, equality and related fields, boththrough specialized, targeted programmes and mainstream funding’. Furthermore, equalitylegislation made discrimination against Travellers an offence.

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However, thefailure of Irish governments to recognize Traveller ethnicity remains .In April2014, the Committee on Justice, concluded that it was ‘unsustainable’ for thestate to continue to reject the ethnicity of Travellers. This report from aparliamentary committee was, however, immediately ridiculed by the chairpersonof the governing Fine Gael party because, he claimed, it had about it the airof ‘political correctness 

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