NUI Galway approves membership of gender equality taskforce

Siptu repeats call for independent equality audit and criticises lack of consultation

Dr Micheline Sheehy Skeffington: last year’s Equality Tribunal discrimination ruling in favour of the scientist led to the establishment of the taskforce on gender equality. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

NUI Galway (NUIG) has approved the full membership of its taskforce on gender equality, following last year's Equality Tribunal discrimination ruling in favour of scientist Dr Micheline Sheehy Skeffington.

The taskforce, which is chaired by former Trinity College Dublin vice-provost Prof Jane Grimson, comprises individuals with a "broad spectrum of expertise and perspectives", the university said. It will report to its governing authority.

A student member will also be added to the taskforce in the near future, it says.

However, the Siptu academic stewards committee at the college has repeated its call for an independent equality audit, and has criticised NUIG for failing to consult unions on the composition and terms of reference for the taskforce.


‘Lack of transparency’

Dr Sheehy Skeffington

also called for an independent review, and said there was a “total lack of transparency” around the exercise.

“Who has chosen these members, and are they serving on a voluntary basis?” she asked.

The members of the taskforce, chaired by Prof Grimson, are: Ballybane Enterprise Centre general manager Liam Bluett; Child and Family Agency chair Norah Gibbons; University College Cork former vice-president Prof Áine Hyland; Queen's University Belfast former reader in psychology Dr John Kremer; NUIG former dean of medicine, nursing and health science Prof Gerry Loftus; Douch Commission of Investigation member and senior counsel Grainne McMorrow; Department of Arts former secretary general Tadhg Ó hÉalaithe; NUIG school of natural sciences lecturer Dr Louise Allcock; NUIG school of political science and psychology senior lecturer Dr Nata Duvvury; NUIG academic secretary Caroline Loughnane; NUIG human resources operations manager Aoife McNena; NUIG school of law head Prof Donncha O'Connell; NUIG JE Cairnes school of business and economics personal professor Prof Maura Sheehan; and NUIG research support officer Natalie Walsh.

Lorna Siggins

Lorna Siggins

Lorna Siggins is the former western and marine correspondent of The Irish Times