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Minister Helen McEntee gives birth to baby boy

Published on 30 April 2021 at 12:56


Minister for Justice and Meath East Fine Gael TD Helen McEntee gave birth to a baby boy on Wednesday night. 

 

 

Minister McEntee has “shattered a glass ceiling” by becoming the first ever member of an Irish Government to give birth while in office. There has been much debate and controversy over how McEntee would take maternity leave- despite there being no provisions for a member of government to take any parental leave. The Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Green coalition government quickly found themselves searching for legislation to allow McEntee take some sort of leave, without her having to resign or vacate her position at cabinet. 

 

 

McEntee will vacate her role as Minister for Justice, but will continue as a sitting member of cabinet without holding any departmental portfolio until she returns from her leave. 

 

 

Minister for Rural and Community Development & Social Protection Heather Humphreys TD will fill responsibility as the head of the Department of Justice while McEntee is on leave. Humphreys will mostly look after matters related to security and policing. 

 

The other member of government looking after McEntee’s portfolio will be super-junior Cabinet Minister Hildegarde Naughton TD. Minister Naughton will look after a wider variety of tasks that will include: economic crime and corruption, sexual and gender-based violence, reports from agencies, the legal system and judiciary and other matters relating to the courts. Minister Humphreys will be bringing judicial appointments to Cabinet. 

 

 

Minister McEntee said on Tuesday as she took her leave, (just a day before she gave birth to her baby boy) that the plans for her leave were a “sticking plaster” until the government would legislate for a permanent solution. The issue of her leave was a chaotic event for government as this is the first time these circumstances have arisen and there is a cap for how many members of government may sit at Cabinet. 

 

 

Ms McEntee said “It’s really important women see other women in roles and positions being able to take maternity leave, being able to return to their jobs and the positions they were working in before,” 

 

 

The birth of McEntee’s baby was announced on LMFM after a spokesperson confirmed that she had given birth to baby boy weighing 7lbs 8oz on Wednesday night in the Rotunda Hospital, Dublin. The name of her son is still unknown to the public. 

 

 

The Citizen’s Assembly on Gender recommended that all elected representatives be entitled to maternity leave- which the government has committed to putting in place for future representatives. Fine Gael Cllr. Lorraine Hall raised the issue of this previously when she had to take her newborn baby to a meeting of Dun Laoighre-Rathdown County Council meeting. She said in an interview with the Irish Independent in December that “maternity leave is key if we want women in politics.” 

 

 

Many TD’s and colleagues of Minister McEntee have been quick to wish her and her husband, Paul Hickey congratulations on the birth of their son. 

 

 

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar TD said at a meeting of the Dáil at the convention centre on Thursday “When it comes to equality and diversity it is often said that people need to see it before they know they can be it,” he said. “I hope that young women and girls will see today that in Ireland one can hold high office, take maternity leave, raise a family and be supported to do so. I accept we have more work to do in this area, but it is a positive day and history is being made today by the McEntee and Hickey family.”

 

 

Taoiseach Micheál Martin TD said on twitter “Congratulations @HMcEntee and Paul on the birth of your wonderful baby boy. A time of great joy for you all. Enjoy! Wishing you every happiness, always.”

 

 

Minister Heather Humphreys TD said “It’s a good job we had the handover a few days early! So delighted for @HMcEntee. A fantastic role model for young women. Helen might be the first serving Cabinet Minister to have a baby but she certainly won’t be the last!”

 

 

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Enterprise Louise O’Reilly TD wished Minister McEntee “all the luck in the world” and added that they needed to address the lack of provision for elected female representatives to take maternity leave. 

 

 

Fine Gael TD for Dun Laoighre Jennifer Carroll MacNeill said it was “powerful proof that young women watching can have high office and still be supported in having a baby” and hopes that government will put permanent measures in place, hopefully before Minister 

 

Minister for Justice and Meath East Fine Gael TD Helen McEntee gave birth to a baby boy on Wednesday night. 

 

 

Minister McEntee has “shattered a glass ceiling” by becoming the first ever member of an Irish Government to give birth while in office. There has been much debate and controversy over how McEntee would take maternity leave- despite there being no provisions for a member of government to take any parental leave. The Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Green coalition government quickly found themselves searching for legislation to allow McEntee take some sort of leave, without her having to resign or vacate her position at cabinet. 

 

 

McEntee will vacate her role as Minister for Justice, but will continue as a sitting member of cabinet without holding any departmental portfolio until she returns from her leave. 

 

 

Minister for Rural and Community Development & Social Protection Heather Humphreys TD will fill responsibility as the head of the Department of Justice while McEntee is on leave. Humphreys will mostly look after matters related to security and policing. 

 

The other member of government looking after McEntee’s portfolio will be super-junior Cabinet Minister Hildegarde Naughton TD. Minister Naughton will look after a wider variety of tasks that will include: economic crime and corruption, sexual and gender-based violence, reports from agencies, the legal system and judiciary and other matters relating to the courts. Minister Humphreys will be bringing judicial appointments to Cabinet. 

 

 

Minister McEntee said on Tuesday as she took her leave, (just a day before she gave birth to her baby boy) that the plans for her leave were a “sticking plaster” until the government would legislate for a permanent solution. The issue of her leave was a chaotic event for government as this is the first time these circumstances have arisen and there is a cap for how many members of government may sit at Cabinet. 

 

 

Ms McEntee said “It’s really important women see other women in roles and positions being able to take maternity leave, being able to return to their jobs and the positions they were working in before,” 

 

 

The birth of McEntee’s baby was announced on LMFM after a spokesperson confirmed that she had given birth to baby boy weighing 7lbs 8oz on Wednesday night in the Rotunda Hospital, Dublin. The name of her son is still unknown to the public. 

 

 

The Citizen’s Assembly on Gender recommended that all elected representatives be entitled to maternity leave- which the government has committed to putting in place for future representatives. Fine Gael Cllr. Lorraine Hall raised the issue of this previously when she had to take her newborn baby to a meeting of Dun Laoighre-Rathdown County Council meeting. She said in an interview with the Irish Independent in December that “maternity leave is key if we want women in politics.” 

 

 

Many TD’s and colleagues of Minister McEntee have been quick to wish her and her husband, Paul Hickey congratulations on the birth of their son. 

 

 

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar TD said at a meeting of the Dáil at the convention centre on Thursday “When it comes to equality and diversity it is often said that people need to see it before they know they can be it,” he said. “I hope that young women and girls will see today that in Ireland one can hold high office, take maternity leave, raise a family and be supported to do so. I accept we have more work to do in this area, but it is a positive day and history is being made today by the McEntee and Hickey family.”

 

 

Taoiseach Micheál Martin TD said on twitter “Congratulations @HMcEntee and Paul on the birth of your wonderful baby boy. A time of great joy for you all. Enjoy! Wishing you every happiness, always.”

 

 

Minister Heather Humphreys TD said “It’s a good job we had the handover a few days early! So delighted for @HMcEntee. A fantastic role model for young women. Helen might be the first serving Cabinet Minister to have a baby but she certainly won’t be the last!”

 

 

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Enterprise Louise O’Reilly TD wished Minister McEntee “all the luck in the world” and added that they needed to address the lack of provision for elected female representatives to take maternity leave. 

 

 

Fine Gael TD for Dun Laoighre Jennifer Carroll MacNeill said it was “powerful proof that young women watching can have high office and still be supported in having a baby” and hopes that government will put permanent measures in place, hopefully before Minister McEntee returns in Autumn 2021. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

McEntee returns in Autumn 2021. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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