Minister for Justice (Ireland)


The Minister for Justice (Irish: An tAire Dlí agus Cirt) is the senior minister at the Department of Justice in the Government of Ireland. The Minister has overall responsibility for law and order in Ireland.[1]

Minister for Justice
Incumbent
Heather Humphreys

since 27 April 2021
Department of Justice
Member of
Reports toTaoiseach
SeatDublin, Ireland
AppointerPresident of Ireland on the nomination of the Taoiseach
Inaugural holderMichael Collins as Minister for Home Affairs
Formation22 January 1919
WebsiteDepartment of Justice

The current Minister for Justice is Heather Humphreys, TD. She is holding this position in temporary capacity during the maternity leave of Helen McEntee, TD, who continues as a minister without portfolio. Humphreys is assisted by two Ministers of State:

History


From 1919 until 1924 the position was known as the Minister for Home Affairs.[6][7] In 1997, the functions of the Minister for Equality and Law Reform were transferred to this Minister, and it was renamed as the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, a title which it retained until 2010.[8] The minister held the title of Minister for Justice and Equality from 2011 to 2020.[9] As of 2020, the position is known as Minister for Justice.[10] This followed a transfer of functions to the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth.

Overview


The Minister's and the Department's main areas of responsibility include: [11]

  • Implementing government policy and proposing new policy on crime, immigration, asylum, criminal and civil law reform and the criminal justice system in general.
  • Implementation of government policy and proposing new policy in relation to national security (an area many countries assign to a separate 'Home' or 'Homeland Security' minister)
  • Control and reform of the Garda Síochána
  • Pardons (which are formally given by the President on the binding "advice" of the government, after proposal by the Minister for Justice - a rarely used power)
  • Implementation of core elements of the Good Friday Agreement.

List of office-holders


  Denotes acting Minister

Minister for Home Affairs 1919–1924

Name Term of office Party Government(s)[lower-alpha 1]
Michael Collins 22 January 1919 1 April 1919 Sinn Féin 1st DM
Arthur Griffith 2 April 1919 22 August 1921 Sinn Féin 2nd DM
Austin Stack[lower-alpha 2] 22 August 1921 9 January 1922 Sinn Féin 3rd DM
Eamonn Duggan 10 January 1922 9 September 1922 Sinn Féin (Pro-Treaty) 4th DM  1st PG
Kevin O'Higgins 30 August 1922 2 June 1924 Cumann na nGaedheal 2nd PG  5th DM  1st EC · 2nd EC

Minister for Justice 1924–1997

Name Term of office Party Government(s)
Kevin O'Higgins 2 June 1924 10 July 1927 Cumann na nGaedheal 2nd EC  3rd EC
W. T. Cosgrave[lower-alpha 3] 10 July 1927 12 October 1927 Cumann na nGaedheal 3rd EC
James FitzGerald-Kenney 12 October 1927 9 March 1932 Cumann na nGaedheal 4th EC  5th EC
James Geoghegan 9 March 1932 8 February 1933 Fianna Fáil 6th EC
P. J. Ruttledge 8 February 1933 8 September 1939 Fianna Fáil 7th EC  8th EC  1st  2nd
Gerald Boland (1st time) 8 September 1939 18 February 1948 Fianna Fáil 2nd  3rd  4th
Seán Mac Eoin 18 February 1948 7 March 1951 Fine Gael 5th
Daniel Morrissey 7 March 1951 13 June 1951 Fine Gael 5th
Gerald Boland (2nd time) 13 June 1951 2 June 1954 Fianna Fáil 6th
James Everett 2 June 1954 20 March 1957 Labour 7th
Oscar Traynor 20 March 1957 11 October 1961 Fianna Fáil 8th  9th
Charles Haughey 11 October 1961 8 October 1964 Fianna Fáil 10th
Seán Lemass (acting) 8 October 1964 3 November 1964 Fianna Fáil 10th
Brian Lenihan Snr 3 November 1964 26 March 1968 Fianna Fáil 10th  11th  12th
Mícheál Ó Móráin 27 March 1968 5 May 1970 Fianna Fáil 12th  13th
Desmond O'Malley 5 May 1970 14 March 1973 Fianna Fáil 13th
Patrick Cooney 14 March 1973 5 July 1977 Fine Gael 14th
Gerry Collins (1st time) 5 July 1977 30 June 1981 Fianna Fáil 15th  16th
Jim Mitchell 30 June 1981 9 March 1982 Fine Gael 17th
Seán Doherty 9 March 1982 14 December 1982 Fianna Fáil 18th
Michael Noonan 14 December 1982 14 February 1986 Fine Gael 19th
Alan Dukes 14 February 1986 10 March 1987 Fine Gael 19th
Gerry Collins (2nd time) 10 March 1987 12 July 1989 Fianna Fáil 20th
Ray Burke[lower-alpha 4] 12 July 1989 11 February 1992 Fianna Fáil 21st
Pádraig Flynn 11 February 1992 4 January 1993 Fianna Fáil 22nd
Máire Geoghegan-Quinn 4 January 1993 15 December 1994 Fianna Fáil 23rd
Nora Owen 15 December 1994 26 June 1997 Fine Gael 24th
John O'Donoghue 26 June 1997 8 July 1997 Fianna Fáil 25th

Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform 1997–2010

Name Term of office Party Government(s)
John O'Donoghue 8 July 1997 6 June 2002 Fianna Fáil 25th
Michael McDowell 6 June 2002 14 June 2007 Progressive Democrats 26th
Brian Lenihan Jnr 14 June 2007 7 May 2008 Fianna Fáil 27th
Dermot Ahern 7 May 2008 23 March 2010 Fianna Fáil 28th

Minister for Justice and Law Reform 2010–2011

Name Term of office Party Government(s)
Dermot Ahern 23 March 2010 19 January 2011 Fianna Fáil 28th
Brendan Smith[lower-alpha 5] 20 January 2011 9 March 2011 Fianna Fáil 28th
Alan Shatter[lower-alpha 6] 9 March 2011 2 April 2011 Fine Gael 29th

Minister for Justice and Equality 2011–2020

Name Term of office Party Government(s)
Alan Shatter[lower-alpha 6] 2 April 2011 7 May 2014 Fine Gael 29th
Frances Fitzgerald 8 May 2014 14 June 2017 Fine Gael 29th · 30th
Charles Flanagan 14 June 2017 27 June 2020 Fine Gael 31st
Helen McEntee 27 June 2020 1 November 2020 Fine Gael 32nd

Minister for Justice 2020–present

Name Term of office Party Government(s)
Helen McEntee 1 November 2020 27 April 2021 Fine Gael 32nd
Heather Humphreys[lower-alpha 7] 27 April 2021 Incumbent Fine Gael
Notes
  1. Before 1937: DM – Dáil Ministry; PG – Provisional Government; EC – Executive Council.
  2. Austin Stack held the title of Secretary of State for Home Affairs.
  3. Also President of the Executive Council of the Irish Free State.
  4. Also Minister for Communications from 31 March 1987 to 6 February 1991.
  5. Also Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.
  6. Also Minister for Defence.
  7. Also Minister for Social Protection and Minister for Rural and Community Development.

See also


References


  1. "Minister for Justice - gov.ie". Government of Ireland. 19 November 2020.
  2. "List of Ministers and Ministers of State", Government of Ireland, retrieved 24 July 2020
  3. "About Us". Department of Justice. Retrieved 24 July 2020.
  4. "Ministerial Responsibilities – Dáil Éireann (33rd Dáil) – Wednesday, 28 Apr 2021". Oireachtas. Retrieved 29 April 2021.
  5. "Statement by Minister for Justice Helen McEntee". Department of Justice. 11 March 2021. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  6. "An early history of the Department". Department of Justice. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
  7. "Ministers and Secretaries Act 1924, Schedule, Tenth Part: Ministers named in former Acts". Irish Statute Book. 21 April 1924. Retrieved 25 August 2020.
  8. Justice (Alteration of Name of Department and Title of Minister) Order 1997 (S.I. No. 298). Statutory Instrument of the Government of Ireland. Retrieved 9 November 2018, Irish Statute Book.
  9. Justice and Law Reform (Alteration of Name of Department and Title of Minister) Order 2011 (S.I. No. 138). Statutory Instrument of the Government of Ireland. Retrieved 9 November 2018, Irish Statute Book.
  10. Justice and Equality (Alteration of Name of Department and Title of Minister) Order 2020 (S.I. No. 452). Statutory Instrument of the Government of Ireland. Retrieved 2 November 2020, Irish Statute Book.
  11. "Our Responsibilities - The Department of Justice". Department of Justice.