Referendum on Children (2012) (Thirty-First Amendment of the Constitution Bill, 2012)


The Provisional Referendum Certificate, stating the result of the voting and published in Iris Oifigiúil on 13 November 2012, was the subject of a petition which was dismissed. The certificate was confirmed by the High Court on 24 April 2015.

The Thirty-First Amendment of the Constitution (Children) Bill 2012 was signed into law on 28 April 2015 – see www.president.ie 

The Thirty-first Amendment of the Constitution (Children) Bill 2012 proposes –

(a) to delete the following section from Article 42 of the Constitution:
“5 In exceptional cases, where the parents for physical or moral reasons fail in their duty towards their children, the State as guardian of the common good, by appropriate means shall endeavour to supply the place of the parents, but always with due regard for the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child.”, and
(b) to insert the following Article after Article 42:
“CHILDREN
Article 42A
2    1°  In exceptional cases, where the parents, regardless of their marital status, fail in their duty towards their children to such extent that the safety or welfare of any of their children is likely to be prejudicially affected, the State as guardian of the common good shall, by proportionate means as provided by law, endeavour to supply the place of the parents, but always with due regard for the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child.
2°  Provision shall be made by law for the adoption of any child where the parents have failed for such a period of time as may be prescribed by law in their duty towards the child and where the best interests of the child so require.
3    Provision shall be made by law for the voluntary placement for adoption and the adoption of any child.
4    1°  Provision shall be made by law that in the resolution of all proceedings –

i    brought by the State, as guardian of the common good, for the purpose of preventing the safety and welfare of any child from being prejudicially affected, or

ii    concerning the adoption, guardianship or custody of, or access to, any child, the best interests of the child shall be the paramount consideration.

2°  Provision shall be made by law for securing, as far as practicable, that in all proceedings referred to in subsection 1o of this section in respect of any child who is capable of forming his or her own views, the views of the child shall be ascertained and given due weight having regard to the age and maturity of the child.”.

 

Click here to download the booklet, entitled “Referendum Results 1937 – 2015” in PDF format. This includes all final referendum results.

Result Summary

Electorate: 3,183,686
Total Poll: 1,066,239
Percentage Poll: 33.49%
Votes in favour of the proposal: 615,731
Votes against the proposal: 445,863
Invalid Ballot Papers: 4,645