I advise organizations in the public and private sector on Public Affairs. I contribute a working knowledge of the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament), EU Decision-making Bodies, NGOs, Public Policy, Political Campaigns, Coalition Building, Socioeconomic Analysis, Political Science, Influencing, Mediation & Negotiation.
From 1998 to 2011 I was a member and Vice-President, of the EESC. This is a consultative body of the European Union, bringing together employers, employees and representatives of various interests. I represented the views of the 344 members from the then 27 Member-States to shape and inform EU policy. My work entailed high-level representation of the EESC on inter-institutional bodies; engagement with the European Commission and European Parliament; at bilateral meetings with the Member States; and on the EESC EU-China Round Table. I was its special rapporteur on its opinion on alcohol-related harm.
I am very privileged to have been an Independent Senator from 2011 to 2016 and believe I have made my time in the Oireachtas as meaningful as possible. I was able to influence and/or initiate legislation in a number of different areas, of which the below is only a sample:
- “The Children and Family Relationships Bill” represents the most important reform of child and family law for a generation. The legislation put children at the heart of family law, provide legal clarity around various family types and address discrimination faced by children in non-marital families.
- Exemption for venues owned by children and youth organisations from the Property Tax.
- Extending the workplace ban on smoking to all vehicles where children are present.
- Ban on corporal punishment of children.
- Co-sponsored legislation to recognise the right to identity of adopted children (still in process).
Please click here to learn more about my work in the Seanad.
Since finishing my term I have advised several parties, assemblies and other organisations in Canada, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on both the development of policies and how to get them implemented. I have also participated in a high-level policy conference for the Commonwealth.
I am available to advise your organisation on its Public Affairs needs, help its policy development, develop its advocacy, build coalitions and support its campaigns.