• Second World Day of the Poor

    the poorWe live in a society that is very comfortable talking in terms of human rights and social justice, but we are troubled when the vocabulary shifts to a more combative linguistic register, says Kevin Hargaden.

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  • Ignatian Examen in Prison

    claire hargadenThe Ignatian Examen is a five-part spiritual exercise which Jesuits do twice daily. It also offers benefits to others, including prisoners. Claire Hargaden reflects on the practice.

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  • Prisoners' Sunday

    prisoner sunday

    Prisoners' Sunday is an opportunity to pause, reflect and pray for the men, women and children in prison and detention. The following short reflection by Eoin Carroll touches upon some key moments in the prison landscape over the past year.

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  • Irish Prisoners Overseas

    Irish Prisoners OverseasIrish citizens who are in prison overseas face lengthy delays to have their applications to be transferred home processed. This must change, says Ciara Kirrane of the ICPO.

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About the Centre

The Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice works to combat injustice and marginalisation in Irish society, through social analysis, education and advocacy.

The Centre highlights complex social issues, informs opinion and advocates for governmental policy change to create a fair and equitable society for all.

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People in prison are amongst the most marginalised and vulnerable in our society. The majority have left school early, experience literacy and learning difficulties and have a history of unemployment... Click here to view all of our material on Penal Policy

Environmental protection has emerged as a key element of social justice debates in recent decades... Click here to view all of our material on Environmental Justice

The right to a safe and secure place to live is one of the most basic human rights, it is fundamental to enable people to live a dignified life... Click here to view all of our material on Housing Policy

In our political discourse, every question of human flourishing seems to be reduced to bottom-line thinking. This focus on riches impoverishes our shared discourse and has serious negative consequences for society Click here to view material on Economic Justice

The Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice focuses on a number of other issues... Explore all here

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Exploring Social Justice

Why Care - Social Justice Awareness for Younger People

The Failed Drug War

Peter McVerry SJ The Failed Drug War

"The War on drugs has long been lost", says Peter McVerry in submission to Government Committee investigating the decriminalisation of being in possession of drugs.

In the submission Peter McVerry argues that the current policy of criminalising drug use is not working. He points out that the criminal justice system have prosecuted thousands, issuing fines and sending people to prison, yet the number of drug users continues to increase.

McVerry says that if we want to reach out to people dependent on drugs then "declaring a war on them is not the best way to do it." Taking a social policy or public health response would see money saved from the criminal justice system (Gardaí, courts, prison service) towards investing in treatment. Our current reality, according to McVerry in his submission, is an inadequate network of treatment facilities nationally.

In the submission Peter McVerry is advocating a U-turn on our current approach to drug misuse because our current policy has failed. Current evidence, he argues, shows the need to decriminalise drug use aimed at reducing harm to the individual, their family and community and society at large.

Read the full submission here: Submission on Drug Possession 2015


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