Bishop McGuckian has called on politicians to seek the most humane solutions to the provision of accommodation for asylum seekers and refugees
The Bishop of Raphoe has called on all election candidates to aim to address social justice issues facing Irish society.
Bishop Alan McGuckian was speaking in his role as chairman of the Council for Justice and Peace of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference.
While the Catholic Church does not support or align itself with any political party, he said, all politicians seeking election should aim to address the housing crisis, the environment, tolerance in our society and the challenges facing young people.
“The growing phenomenon of family homelessness and the increasing number of children in temporary accommodation must be addressed as the distress, worry and trauma which these families and children endure is immense and will have lasting impact on their opportunities in life," he said.
On the environment, he said politicians should prioritise immediate action on an issue which not only affects Ireland but hits the developing world hardest.
Bishop McGuckian also said politicians must ensure that certain sectors of society, such as the agricultural sector and those already experiencing poverty, are not disproportionately disadvantaged by new climate-related policies.
He also called on politicians to seek the most humane solutions to the provision of accommodation for asylum seekers and refugees and to ensure that intolerant language has no place in political discourse.
“Our council, as well as my fellow bishops, have been concerned at the increase in incidents of intolerant and racist language and actions by a small minority in our country which has always been known for the warmth of its welcome,” he said.
Bishop McGuckian said young people today face so many challenges.
“In particular, I am concerned about the growing impact of so-called precarious work on young people and families,” he said.
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