This publication gives an account of the work of Pavee Point in Traveller community development over the last 30 years and features the evocative and empowering photographs of Derek Speirs. “If there is a consistent theme that emerges from this book it is the determination of a small minority to struggle against the huge inequalities they have faced including racism, poverty and official neglect,” says Ronnie Fay, Pavee Point Co Director in her preface to the book.
In his foreword to the publication author Colum McCann writes: “Cleary the ability of Irish Travellers and the Roma to tell their stories is paramount to dignity and survival. Equally it is profoundly important that the story be heard – otherwise the whole landscape will continue to be gate locked. A story without a listener is hardly a story at all. The stories must go back and forth: from Traveller to mainstream and back again. Within this context, story -telling is the precise crux of the matter – the Travellers and the Roma have a right to absolute self- determination, and they have to be involved in all decisions that affect the past, the present and the consequent future.” 1
About the Artist
Derek Speirs is a working photo-journalist, whose images are used constantly in the press in Ireland and abroad. His photographs are the products of a clear decision which Derek made early in his practice about the kind of photographer he could be as a result of his understanding of the medium and its context. Over the past thirty years a variety of independent local and regional Traveller initiatives and national Traveller organisations have used community work approaches and methods in their work for justice, equality ad human rights with Travellers.
About the Publisher
Dublin Travellers Education & Development Group now also known as Pavee Point, their mission is to contribute to improvement in the quality of life, living circumstances, status and participation of Travellers & Roma through working innovatively for social justice, greater solidarity, development, equality and human rights. 2