This is the 500th Briefing Paper published by the Catholic Parliamentary Liaison Office (CPLO) since it was formed in 1997. Over the years, we have used these ‘century’ papers to offer an overview of one or other aspect of where we are as a country: how far we have travelled away from our divided and oppressive past; how far we still have to go; and what strengths and weaknesses propel us forward or hold us back.
Our 100th paper (April 2004) considered Parliament, the central institution of our democracy and the one on which our office focuses primarily. The 200th paper (Feb 2009) looked back at the range of legislation and policy issues covered by CPLO in its first decade or so, and at how our work adapted itself to the changing political landscape. BP 300 (Oct 2012) was entitled A Fifth Estate? The Role and Power of Civil Society. It examined the crucial role played by our country’s thousands of civil society organisations which, taken together, are every bit as important to the maintenance of a vibrant democracy, and the delivery of its benefits, as are the representative, executive and judicial structures of government.
Read the full BP here: BP 500 Our Hills and How We Climb Them