Search icon


22nd Mar 2022

Viewers praise Claire Byrne segment on the Travelling Community

“Such an important programme tonight.”

Last night’s episode of Claire Byrne Live featured a segment dedicated to the Travelling Community and explored the discrimination the group continues to face in Ireland.

Claire was joined by Billy Walsh, a boxer, and reality TV star Hughie Maughan.

Hughie spoke to Claire about some of the racist abuse he has experienced for being a Traveller.

He said: “We (Travellers) don’t have any allyship. Not only do we not have allyship, it’s bizarre that there’s allyship for people that are so prejudiced towards us.

“And not only is prejudice so acceptable, that even on social media people can make these comments that we know you wouldn’t get away with today in so much cancel culture, we wouldn’t get away with saying for any other racial background.”

Hughie explained that he has been targeted with racist slurs, but that many don’t see the abuse as the hate crime that it is, and he added that he gets more prejudice as a Traveller than as a gay man.

Also on the show, Billy spoke about the need for tolerance and acceptance.

He told viewers: “We all need to look at ourselves first in the mirror and figure out who we are because you know we are all God’s children, we’re all on this earth and we’re all on this country together trying to live and cohabit and no matter what colour, race, creed we are it should not make any difference.

“Accept everybody for who they are. Be as friendly and as kind to someone as you can, and then it will be a far better place to live in.”

The show also pointed to a recent poll which demonstrated the extent of anti-Traveller attitudes in modern Ireland. For instance, research from Amárach found that 48% of people would not be happy to have Traveller accommodation within a mile of their home.

Viewers praised Claire Byrne Live for exhibiting the prejudice and racism Travellers still face in Ireland.

One wrote: “Wonderful to see the Travelling community and culture along with their values being explained on @clairebyrnelive via the wonderful guests. People’s lived experience should be heard to minimise bias.”

Another tweeted: “Such an important programme tonight. Great role models from our Travelling community speaking their truth. Must admit it’s a hard listen. Our state really has failed to support this important minority group.”