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High family areas hardest hit by rising unemployment

Commuter belt areas like Meath and Kildare, which have high numbers of married households with children, are being hit the hardest by rising unemployment.

07/08/08
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Growing concern among women about working mums

New data suggests that there is increasing concern about the impact of working mothers on family life, according to a new survey by Cambridge University.

06/08/08
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Surrogate baby set to become orphan after commissioning couple splits up

A ‘test tube baby’ in India may become the world's first surrogate orphan after the Japanese couple who were to adopt her split up.

06/08/08
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Average age of women giving birth rising, according to figures

For the first time ever more children are being born to Irish women in their late thirties than to women in their late twenties as mothers-to-be are leaving raising a family until later than ever.

05/08/08
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“Lads’ mags” help cause marital breakdown, says leading Tory

"Lads’ mags" are encouraging young men to look at women as sex objects, and their publishers should be held to account for this, according to a leading Conservative politician.

05/08/08
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RTE settles case over broadcast bias

RTÉ has settled its High Court action against the Broadcasting Complaints Commission over its decision upholding a complaint about the use of a graphic featuring a clerical collar, rosary beads and Bible in relation to a TV news item about the Ferns report into child sexual abuse by Catholic priests.

01/08/08
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Turkey's ruling pro-Islamic party narrowly escapes ban

Turkey's Constitutional Court has cut in half the State funding for the ruling AK Party, but has stepped back from banning it. The party, which won a decisive victory at the polls last year, had been accused of undermining the country's very restrictive secular system.

31/07/08
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RTE challenging religious symbol ruling

RTÉ is to challenge a ruling by the Broadcasting Complaints Commission (BCC) over a successful complaint made by a viewer against the use by the station of a religious symbol in a report on the findings of the Ferns inquiry into clerical child abuse. The station has begun High Court proceedings against the BCC.

30/07/08
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Government to push for “support for families”, says Hanafin

The Government is looking to institute policies which will “support the family”, according to the Minister for Social and Family Affairs, Mary Hanafin. In an interview with the Sunday Independent, Minister Hanafin said that the Government had “the responsibility of supporting family”.

29/07/08
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Loss of religion behind social problems, says Rabbi

Nearly all of the social problems facing Britain stem from a loss of religion, the Chief Rabbi told Anglican bishops last night.

29/07/08
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Sikh girl wins right to wear religious bangle

A Sikh girl in the UK has won the right to wear a religious bangle at school after the High Court found in her favour in a landmark ruling which could impact on schools across the country.

29/07/08
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Irish government policy should not favour marriage, says UN committee

Ireland's laws should no longer favour marriage over other family forms, but instead treat all “non-traditional forms of partnership” equally, according to the UN Human Rights Committee. The Committee spoke to various representatives of the Irish Government last about the State's human rights record.

25/07/08
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Almost half IVF doctors believe smokers and the obese should not get treatment: poll

Nearly 50 per cent of fertility experts believe that IVF treatment should not be offered to smokers or obese people, according to a new survey. The poll of international experts, most of whom work in the UK, found that only 29 per cent of such experts felt that IVF should be offered to all.

25/07/08
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Growing unemployment could lead to more divorce, says Legal Aid Board

The Legal Aid Board (LAB) has predicted that growing unemployment could result in more couples seeking State assistance to separate and divorce.

24/07/08
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UK policeman claims harassment over faith

Graham Cogman, a UK constable of 15 years standing, has taken a case against Norfolk Police on foot of claims he was victimised for refusing to wear a pink ribbon on his uniform to mark a "gay pride" event. Mr Cogman has also questioned the force's stance towards homosexuals.

24/07/08
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Call for married couples to be permitted to give children up for adoption

The Crisis Pregnancy Agency (CPA) has told the Oireachtas Committee on the Constitutional Amendment on Children that married couples “facing crisis pregnancy” should be allowed to place their child for adoption.

24/07/08
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Study shows demand for non-denominational secondary schools

Educate Together, which provides non denominational primary school education, will step up its campaign to establish schools at second level, after a study which showed strong parental support for greater school choice.

23/07/08
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California Supreme Court allows referendum on preserving marriage

The US state of California will get to vote in November on a state constitutional amendment aimed at banning same-sex marriage, the state Supreme Court decided last week. In a unanimous ruling, without comment, the court dismissed a lawsuit by gay-rights advocates seeking to remove an initiative sponsored by pro-marriage groups from the Nov. 4 ballot.

The measure, Proposition 8, would overturn the court's 4-3 ruling May 15 that allowed gay and lesbian couples to marry in California .

The suit was "a desperate effort to keep the amendment away from the democratic process," said attorney Glen Lavy of the Alliance Defense Fund, which represents sponsors of Proposition 8.

Their opponents -- Equality California, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union -- said they were disappointed in the ruling.

As with one of the laws the court struck down two months ago, Prop. 8 declares that "only a marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognised in California."

The court majority declared two months ago that denying marriage to same-sex couples discriminates against them because of their sexual orientation and violates their fundamental right -- contained in the right of privacy that state voters approved in 1972 -- to marry the partner of their choice.

The lawsuit against Prop. 8 argued that the one- sentence initiative was actually a broad attack on basic rights recognised by the court -- a measure that would simultaneously deprive one group of fundamental freedoms by majority vote and strip the courts of their ability to enforce constitutional guarantees.

Although its backers call it a constitutional amendment, Prop. 8 was actually a constitutional revision, the suit contended. A revision must be submitted to the voters by a two-thirds majority of the state Legislature.

Lawyers for the Prop. 8 backers argued that an amendment to restore the state's previous definition of marriage would leave courts with "full authority to continue protecting the rights of minorities." They said equally far-reaching changes in California law -- for example, the restoration of the death penalty in 1972 and the overhaul of the tax system under Proposition 13 in 1978 -- were accomplished by initiative.

22/07/08

Majority of children of British-born mothers born out of wedlock

New figures announced this month have revealed that half the children of British-born mothers are being born outside marriage. The figures, published by the UK's Office for National Statistics also suggest that only a minority of children of long-standing British parents will grow up with a married mother and father.

22/07/08
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Cameron backs Obama on black fathers

Tory leader David Cameron has echoed the sentiments of US Democratic Presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama in calling for black fathers to get more involved with their children.

17/07/08
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"The child...shall have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and, as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents."

Article 7. UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.