Core Values

Senator Tom Clonan debating.

Ireland is one of the worst countries in the European Union to have a disability.

Tom Clonan has been campaigning for decades for Irish Society to be inclusive, supportive and open to everyone, especially disabled citizens of all ages, children and women.

As a parent, carer, advocate and committed feminist, Tom is fighting to ensure no-one gets left behind by proposing legislation regarding disability rights, health care and gender equality.

Disability Rights

As a parent and carer, Senator Tom Clonan witness the endless discrimination a disabled citizen in Ireland has to face every day, in healthcare, education, housing , public transport, and every other aspect of life. He is fighting for an Ireland where every person can live an independent, fulfilled life – regardless of their identity or status, whether that be disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious belief or ethnicity.

At present, Ireland is the only country in the European Union where there is no legal obligation for the state to provide treatments, therapies or supports to disabled citizens or elderly. Nor is there any legal obligation for the state to provide carers, carer supports or respite to disabled citizens, the elderly or their families.
During the lifetime of this government Senator Tom Clonan will introduce legislation to remedy this.

Tom believes that the state is failing in his duty of care when it comes to supporting its disabled citizens. As soon as they show the ambition to lead an independent self-actualised life, as artists, entrepreneurs or employees, the state deprives them of their supports – denying them their full human rights as Irish citizens.

Equality does not mean treating people the same. It means recognising the extraordinary challenges that disabled citizens face and scaffolding them with the extra supports they need.

Tom Clonan Soldier Still 2

Irish Neutrality

Senator Tom Clonan understands and appreciates the immense value of Ireland’s Neutrality as a core component of our foreign policy. Neutrality as a powerful value. Tom has served on the front line of conflict as a United Nation’s Peacekeeper and has 23 years of experience as a security analyst and a journalist in Ireland, the Middle East and Central Europe. Tom’s experience of conflict and our role as an independent neutral voice for peace gives Ireland a unique moral platform and credibility as a peacemaker in the world.

Ireland has participated in many conflicts internationally – in Europe, Africa and Asia – as a neutral peace broker. Our robust involvement in conflict resolution does not require us to join NATO or any other military alliance. We are militarily neutral, but always active in the cause of peace and reconciliation.

Gender-based Violence

Senator Tom Clonan is a veteran of Ireland’s armed forc3es and of inernational Confiret. He served in the Defence Forces for eleven years (1989 – 2000) alongside his male and female colleagues.
In 1996, as a serving Captain, he completed a PhD on the experiences of his female colleagues. His groundbreaking researched revealed shockingly high levels of gender based discrimination and violence in the Irish Defence Forces including the widespread sexual assault and rape of female soldiers.

His research led to an Independent Government Enquiry which confirmed the toxic workplace culture within the Irish Armed Forces. Tom has worked for the last two decades as an academic, researcher and journalist to campaign against gender-based violence. In 2020 he was appointed to the HEA Expert Group on ending sexual violence in third level education. In 2021 he was appointed to the Technological University Dublin Taskforce on ending sexual violence and harassment on campus.

Gender-based violence has been on Tom’s agenda for over two decades and he continues to advocate for the rights of survivors and for structural change to end all gender-based violence in Ireland.

Photo of Tom and the Women of Honour in the Oireachtas

Vision

Health

As a carer, Dr Tom Clonan experienced first-hand the disjointed and mismanagement of our Health Care System. A perfect example of this is the staffing crisis which is mainly due to insufficient pay, long hours, and the immense costs for those seeking to train as a health care professional. For example, a 1st year graduate entry medical student is not eligible to any support or scholarships for the course as it is not recognised as a level 9 degree.


It is with this in mind that Tom stands for pay restoration, pay equality – and most importantly, medical leadership in our healthcare system so that we can retain the well trained and right calibre of GPs, hospital doctors and consultants.

Unless we protect our healthcare system there will be a move to privatisation and commercialization of our health provision leading to a more American-style model. He will continue to campaign for a Constitutional Guarantee for universal access to public healthcare.

Climate Change and Agriculture

As the world enters a period of global flux, with conflict, fuel and food security a growing concern, Senator and former security analyst Tom Clonan believes that Ireland must maintain its primary position and sustainability as a net exporter of food and food products.


Tom deems climate change is the pre-eminent threat to global peace and stability. He therefore prioritises and incorporates climate change actions into every aspect of his work in the Seanad.


Tom is working to ensure that Ireland re-configures its over-reliance on oil and fossil fuels to sustainable fuel sources and to become a net exporter of green energy. This is in alignment with building Irish Neutrality as well as fighting climate change.

Culture

As a fluent Irish speaker, Senator Tom Clonan believes that in an age of globalisation, our unique cultural identity is a singular identifier that will be key to our future survival as an Island Nation.


He supports all initiatives to preserve our language and unique cultural identity.
As an artist himself, Tom supports the arts in their demand for better state-lead funding and support.

Education

Dr Clonan believes equal access to education is what will determine this Republic’s future. To achieve this, we need equal access to higher education for all. For example, the recent Higher Education Authority Bill 2022, not every student is eligible to the Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) as those in private further education facilities.

Housing

As a parent himself, Senator Tom Clonan believes that one of the cruellest aspects of Irish society is that its youngest citizens cannot even have the modest ambition of renting or buying their own home. That is the definition of a dysfunctional society.

Social Protection

As a parent of four, Senator Tom Clonan understands well what it means to care for one’s children while also juggling a career. He will fight for state-supported childcare for all of our citizens at home and in the workplace similar to the “Ecole Maternelle” system in France.


Tom tirelessly works to reverse the cuts to disabled children, adults and carers and for the adequate funding of home care packages for all of our vulnerable citizens – the disabled, the elderly – so that nobody gets left behind.


Tom thrives to end homelessness for all Irish citizens, regardless of gender, ethnicity or age, especially the most vulnerable, children.

Security

Senator Tom Clonan is the son and grandson of members of An Garda Siochana and has worked alongside An Garda Siochana during the Troubles. He is therefore keen on working to ensure there is proper investment in our policing structures with regard to pay, training and 21st Century equipment and infrastructure.


Tom is greatly in favour of the ongoing root and branch reform of our policing service, its independence from politics and its proper oversight.
He continuously works to restore public confidence in the Administration of Justice in Ireland.


Tom is advocating for proper investment in An Garda Siochana to combat organised crime and drug related crime. Ireland has one of the highest rates of homicide by firearm in the EU. This drug related phenomenon needs to be targeted and brought to an end.