Monday, March 28, 2011

Elections to Ireland's Senate

Now that the general election to Ireland's main house of parliament the Dail  have taken place and the new government has taken office the next step is the holding of elections to the Senate (Seanad)

Elections to the Seanad (Upper House of representatives in Ireland) will take place next month, on 27 April.   The Seanad fulfills a very important aspect of government, and it is vital that people of integrity are elected to be members of that body.   There are various methods of being nominated for election to the Seanad, from a number of panels.  One of these panels is the National University of Ireland (NUI) panel, and those who have graduated from any of the constituent colleges and associated colleges of NUI are entitled to vote for candidates in this area.   If, therefore, you or anybody whom you know is a graduate of any of the institutions listed below you may vote for one or more of the twenty-seven candidates on the NUI panel.

We need a powerful, capable and honest person in the Seanad who will speak out for the protection of all human life from conception to natural death.   Please, therefore, give very serious consideration to giving your No. 1 vote to Rónán Mullen   

Rónán Mullen (Senator from 2007 to the present time) is one of those on the NUI panel who is presenting himself for re-election to the Seanad. 
Senator Mullen is –
Independent Member of Seanad Éireann, representing graduates of the National University of Ireland;
Member of the Irish Parliamentary Delegation to the Council of Europe at Strasbourg, 2010;
Lecturer, Law and Communications, Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown;
Called to the Bar, 2003;
Former President, NUI Galway Students Union;
Member of Board of Directors, Daughters of Charity Community Services.

As a Senator, Rónán initiated the first ever Oireachtas debate on end-of-life care.  Addressing members of the Seanad in September 2010, Rónán said: ‘Our society does not pay sufficient attention to the welfare of those receiving end-of-life care.’   He called on the Government to ensure that there were national guidelines operating in all acute and community hospitals for end-of-life care issues.  He asked for measures to allow people to die in their homes where this was their wish, and for resources to allow more people access comprehensive hospice services in the community.

In October 2010 Rónán, together with Luca Volonte, Chairperson of the European
People’s Party at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, was responsible for pushing through 29 amendments to a report which sought to restrict severely the right of medical staff to conscientiously object to certain medical procedures, including abortion.   Rónán and his colleagues transformed the report to affirm the right of conscientious objection.   This was a major victory for pro-life.

There are many other areas of work and interest in which Rónán is involved, such as political reform, education, the prison system, supporting families and children, the Irish language, etc.  You can find more information by contacting him at, or by logging on to his website,

Are you a graduate of any of the following institutions?  
If so, have you received your voting papers?   If you haven’t yet received your voting papers please contact the National University of Ireland at 01-4392424 (Ireland); or 00353-1-4392424 (outside Ireland). 
Alternatively, you can enquire from Senator Mullen via email (as given above), or ph. 01-6183930 (or 00353-1-6183930 from outside Ireland).

NUI colleges:
NUI Galway (UCG)
NUI Maynooth
University College, Dublin
University College, Cork

NUI-recognised colleges:
Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland       (from July 1977 onwards)
National College of Art and Design          (from 1996 onwards)
Milltown Institute                                      (from January 2004 onwards
Shannon College of Hotel Management   (from November 2000 onwards)
Institute of Public Administration             (from July 2001 onwards)
St. Angela’s College of Education, Sligo  (from April 1978 onwards)

Graduates of colleges (who received NUI-recognised degrees):
St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth                (1910 to 1997)
Mary Immaculate College of Education    (17 April 1975 to start October 1994)
Our Lady of Mercy College, Carysfort      (17 April 1975 onwards)
St. Patrick’s College Drumcondra              (17 April 1975 to start October 1995)
Thomond College of Education, Limerick (9 December 1976 to 16 December 1977)
NIHE, Limerick                                          (11 March 1976 to 15 December 1977)