Fianna Fáil reintroducing Bill to give National Anthem official recognition

Fianna Fáil reintroducing Bill to give National Anthem official recognition
Mark Daly

Fianna Fáil is planning to reintroduce a Bill to the Seanad which aims to protect and give official recognition to the National Anthem.

The Protection of Copyright and Related Rights Amendment Bill was first introduced in 2016 but lapsed with the dissolution of the Dáil and Seanad.

It seeks to protect Amhrán na bhFiann from being used in advertising and will be brought by Senator Mark Daly to this year's first Seanad sitting on January 22.

A public consultation convened by the Seanad Public Consultation Committee in 2017 and 2017 found favourable public support for the anthem and that protocols in relation to its use should be introduced, Senator Daly said.

“As report rapporteur, I was happy to see the public engagement and the desire to protect the Anthem as much as possible from any use in commercial advertising. The National Anthem belongs to all Irish people, it is a key symbol of our identity yet it lacks protection.

“I first introduced this Bill in 2014 due to the lapse in copyright. I was contacted by constituents, unhappy with the idea of the Anthem being used for advertising purposes.

"Following this, I worked with members of all Parties and the Seanad Public Consultation Committee and we published this report in June 2018.

One of the findings through our work on this report was that there is a need to formally adopt the Anthem in the Irish language as this has never been done by the State.

"However, it was also brought to our attention that there was no official version of the anthem that could be performed by members of the Deaf Community through Irish Sign Language.

"The Deaf Community themselves have undergone a very thorough consultative process and have composed the official Irish Sign Language National Anthem which is provided for in this Bill," he said.

Senator Daly said it was "very fitting" that the Bill is progressed as this year marks the 110th Anniversary of the Anthem being written by Peadar Kearney

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