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Question

418. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality her plans to enable those of a non-religious viewpoint to truthfully affirm rather than being forced to swear the existing oath, upon taking up high office. [49714/14]

Answer

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy may be aware a constitutional referendum would be required to amend the Constitutional provisions in question and this issue has been considered by Government. In July 2012, the Government approved consideration of an amendment to the constitution so as to provide for an alternative secular judicial declaration upon appointment to the judiciary. The matter was then referred to the Constitutional Convention and the view of the Convention was that no constitutional oath should contain a religious element. The matter is currently under consideration in my Department.