Fergal Landy selected as Labour candidate for Midlands North West constituency

14 April 2024

At the Labour Party selection convention in Galway city today, Fergal Landy currently CEO of the Family Resource Centre National Forum, was selected as our candidate for the Midlands North West constituency of the European Parliament. Fergal is also running for election to Galway County Council in the Athenry-Oranmore local electoral area.

At the convention he outlined his key priorities for Midlands North West, with a focus on balanced regional and rural development, protecting Ireland’s neutrality, and the absence of long term planning which has had such an impact on cities such as Galway.

With an expertise in community development, social work and human rights, Mr Landy outlined his reasons for running to Labour members, saying:

“It is a great privilege to be selected as the Labour Party candidate for the Midlands North West constituency, and I look forward to campaigning with our candidates and supporters across the fifteen counties over the next two months. Key issues on the campaign will be housing, the environment, and strengthening social Europe. In particular I want to focus on how cities like Galway, and our rural hinterlands can be better served by Europe. The three principles that will underpin my campaign, and my work if elected are:

  1. A clear line of accountability between the citizen and the European Union.
  2. A rights-based approach to public service provision.
  3. An economy that serves society, not the other way around.

“Overall the EU has been a positive project for Ireland, but my first priority will be to ensure that the local is connected to Europe, and the people feel they have influence over the decisions made that affect them. Our sense of place starts in our local communities, and we must connect those to the social, economic, and cultural benefits, but also the challenges, that come from Europe.

“This is most evident in how the strong views of Irish people about the conflict in Gaza have not been listened to. If elected I will work to protect our military neutrality, while seeking to use Irish political influence at a European level to play a stronger role in conflict resolution.

“Secondly, I stand for a rights-based approach to public service provision, which reflects my experience and career working for children, families, individuals, and communities. The European Union needs to live up to the principles of human rights, and its institutions should be used to empower the autonomy of Irish people to realise their rights and maximise their potential including the protection of the most vulnerable.

“Such a rights-based approach requires proactive prevention and early intervention rather than the crisis driven and reactive response we are currently witnessing to our most significant societal challenges. This is evident in our governments neglect of issues like child poverty, child health, disability and educational supports, the housing crisis and homelessness, mental health and disability supports, home care and health services for older people. So many of our hard fought for rights now come from European initiatives, and I want to continue this work.

“Here in Galway, the absence of this long term mindset that we need when planning for change is evident in relation to housing and the required sewage treatment, health services, transport, and schools.

“Further, I believe the economy must serve our society, and not the other way around. I want to be part of our MEP team working to strengthen social rights. For me, the purpose of a vibrant economy is to facilitate an inclusive society by promoting the rights and wellbeing of the people. This includes addressing the twin challenges of climate change and biodiversity by ensuring a just transition where the least well off whether in an urban or rural context are not expected to bear the burden of the transition. EU polices have a huge influence on regional and rural development in Ireland so we must do more to support our farmers and food producers adapt to climate change.”

Labour Leader Ivana Bacik said:

“Fergal is a superb candidate for the Midlands North-West European election constituency who will proudly represent our values on the campaign trail. As the far right reaches for government across the EU, it is critical that we elect Irish voices to the Party of European Socialists in support of a fair and inclusive society.

“Fergal’s record, skills and experience is exactly what we need in the European Parliament where he would bring a deep understanding of community development, social and human rights to his work.

“With an extra seat in the constituency for this election, there is a real opportunity now to elect a principled and progressive MEP to join our Socialist and Democrats Alliance in the European Parliament. This will ensure the voices and concerns of 1.8 million Irish people are clearly heard when decisions are made over the next five years. I look forward to campaigning with Fergal over the next 8 weeks alongside our many local candidates in Midlands North West.”


Notes to Editors

Fergal Landy is currently Chief Executive Officer of the Family Resource Centre National Forum, which represents 121 Family Resource Centres nationwide and is Ireland’s largest human rights-based community development and family support programme operating across the life-course.

He has over twenty years of experience working in public service delivery and improvement initially with the HSE as a social worker and a community development worker. He has undertaken academic research, policy development and teaching at the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, University of Galway.

He later worked on a national reform programme called Prevention, Partnership and Family Support funded by the Atlantic Philanthropies managing its implementation and leading to tangible benefits for children, families, individuals, and communities. He has degree in social work and Masters in International Law and Human Rights. Fergal is also a board member of the Children’s Rights Alliance.

Originally from Sixmilebridge County Clare, Fergal has lived locally in Oranmore/Maree, County Galway for over 20 years with his partner Áine and their three children who attend local schools. He has been and is involved in many sporting and community groups since he moved to Oranmore/Maree.

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