The Economic, Social and Cultural Initiative operates from the belief that the adoption and application of economic, social and cultural rights play a fundamental role in the creation of a more just, inclusive and socially sustainable society.
The Initiative believes that difficulties arise in vindicating the rights outlined in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights because they are insufficiently incorporated/ reflected in the Constitution.

Aim:
The aim of the Initiative is to ensure that economic, social and cultural rights already adopted and ratified by Ireland though the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) are given justiciable expression in the constitution through constitutional incorporation of the ICESCR, a Bill of Rights, Charter of Rights or by means of new or amended Constitutional Article(s).

Remit of the Initiative:
– To promote and advance an understanding of economic, social and cultural rights amongst politicians, administrators, civil society organisations and citizens as a set of applicable rights that are constitutionally enshrined and justiciable;
– To progress the strengthening of ESC Rights through whatever mechanisms and opportunities available;

Principles of operation: The purpose of the Initiative is to campaign for the establishment of ESC rights, specifically those outlined in the ICESCR. As such the Initiative will only comment on matters relating to ESC rights. The Initiative:

– Seeks to support and provide a platform for the advancement of a range of ESC rights
– Will work in collaboration with other organisations and groups concerned with ESC rights
– Acknowledges the expertise and remit of groups concerned with particular areas of ESC rights

Decision-making: The Initiative will operate in a collective, participative and democratic manner in making decisions.
The Initiative will seek a consensus in decision making while acknowledging that this may not always be possible.

Criteria for membership: Membership is open to all groups involved in or promoting rights that are genuinely identifiable as ESC rights according to the ICESCR, whether that is explicitly stated or not.

Meetings and communications: Meetings will be held at regular intervals according to agreed need. Meetings will be chaired and structured to a provided agenda. All discussion points and decisions will be noted. A note of the meeting will be circulated to all members subject to the need for confidentiality on matters related to individuals.

Campaign communications and messaging: All public communications will be issued subject to the general agreement of the membership. All communications will be framed within the fundamental mission, aims and principles of the Initiative.

Members: Membership is open to organisations and groups whose work is concerned with the promotion, advancement or procurement of ESC rights for their membership or target group.

The Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Initiative is a coalition of
over 60 civil society organisations. Current active members involved in the preparation of the March 2017 ESC Rights Conference are: