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Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh

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Order of Business
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We had a lot of razzmatazz about the visit of President Trudeau last week, with the Taoiseach, the socks, the jogging, etc. I know the issue of the Irish in Canada and across the globe would have been raised.
I had a meeting yesterday with Ciaran Staunton from the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform, who told me there are still great frustrations about a lack of movement by the Government on quite a number of proposals that would have been in the diaspora policy, which was spearheaded at the time by the then Minister, Deputy Deenihan. He told me there are huge frustrations about difficulty people have in getting access to driver licences, which is causing very practical problems for the undocumented in the US, but there are also issues around people who want to come back. A report on Irish citizens who would like to come back to Ireland was to have been produced and published by the Department, but still has not been seen.
I note also there has been very little talk about presidential voting rights since the new Taoiseach took office. There are rumblings around the House that he is not in favour of it and that the Minister of State, Deputy Phelan, whose Department would be overseeing the organisation of the register of electors, is not a great supporter of it. I would like the Leader to clarify if Government policy on presidential voting rights has changed. Could we have the relevant Minister in the House as soon as possible to discuss the diaspora issues, but also the issues of presidential voting rights, the progress that has been made in recent months to push towards that referendum, and when we can expect to see it? It is important that we send a signal to our Irish citizens abroad that the Government is serious about this issue, that it is being moved forward and that they will see it within the near future.