Limerick migrants encouraged to enter political arena

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Former Limerick City Deputy Mayor and Fianna Fáil councillor Abul Kalam Azad Telekdar

THE Immigrant Council of Ireland is calling on potential political candidates from a migrant background in Limerick to attend a series of webinars exploring diversity in politics throughout March and April.

The series will feature contributions from former Deputy Limerick City Mayor and Fianna Fáil councillor Abul Kalam Azad Telekdar  along with former and current councillors from migrant backgrounds, as well as experts in the political system and campaigning.

‘Promoting Democratic Participation: An Active Citizenship for Migrants’, aims to introduce potential candidates to the Irish political system, covering topics such as: party systems in Ireland, mobilisation of migrant voters, migrant women in politics, party affiliation, electoral campaign organisation, outreach strategies, and social media campaigning.

The first session in the series will take place tomorrow ( Wednesday, March 9) at 6pm.

According to research carried out by the Immigrant Council on the experiences of migrant election candidates in 2019, migrants experience additional campaigning barriers that other candidates do not have to face. In order to combat these barriers, the Immigrant Council has delivered a number of projects including voters’ education workshops and internship schemes for migrants.

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Teresa Buczkowska of the Immigrant Council of Ireland says that migrant political participation has significantly increased in recent years.

“Currently we have 12 local councillors from a migrant background, and we are working with a number of potential election candidates. The local councillors are the best trainers and role models that can provide knowledge and encouragement to migrants who are considering running for local elections in Limerick in 2024.

“There are many capable migrant community leaders in Limerick and across Ireland who would make excellent local councillors and we hope we can reach them with our webinars.”

All webinars are free of charge and people interested in attending can register here