The Constitution and women in the home
Sir, –The article in the Constitution regarding women in the home doesn’t go far enough.
It credits women for the most thankless, exhausting, low-status, zero-remuneration, high-responsibility job. Unfortunately it appears that this remains the purview of women in most cases and is unlikely to change much in the future. If we are going to amend the Constitution, then the women who do this job should get pension rights, financial compensation and economic support from the State. There should be training, support facilities, and opportunities to network. Employers should be educated regarding the talent and resilience that these women have to offer, and there should be competition to hire women returning to the commercial world. Bridges should be named after them. Streets should be built in their honour. Once the women who do this job are treated better than footballers, hurlers and rugby players will society truly acknowledge the work these women do. I say don’t get rid of that article in the Constitution – give these women the full credit that it aspired to but never achieved. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – I refer to letters defending (September 14th) article 41.2 of the Constitution, which says that, “Mothers shall not be obliged to engage in labour to the neglect of their duties in the home”, on the grounds that without this article, pressure would be exerted on women to return to the workforce. As a professional working mum, I welcome the defence of and respect for work in the home and the nurturing of the next generation. However, in 2018, neither this defence nor the associated duties the article references should be restricted to women. Change “mothers” to “parents” and let’s take the pressure off dads too! – Yours, etc,