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Government Departments

Arts, Culture & Language

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht – a government department which works toward promoting and protecting Irish heritage and culture, and advancing the use of the Irish language. Its functions operate on the basis of legislation of national parks, monuments, Irish language, and cultural initiatives.



Department of Education and Skills – the branch of the Irish government responsible for education and training. It implements public policy in this sector.


Equality & Social Integration

Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government – a government department which focuses on issues affecting communities such as housing and homelessness, local community development (by running programs such as SICAP), local government, public drinking water and wastewater services, and Met Éireann.


Department of Justice and Equality – This government department has a wide array of responsibilities including: Garda and policing, courts policy, equality and integration, refugees and immigration, as well as others.

Gender Equality in Ireland ( is a subdivision of this department focused on promoting the National Women’s Strategy and other international policies for gender equality.


Department of Social Protection – helping disadvantaged people – disabled, retired and older people, jobseekers and carers – access support for their social needs.


Public Health

Health Service Executive (HSE) – the HSE is charged with operating Ireland’s national health services. The HSE is tasked with implementing Ireland’s public policy in the health services sector and has several departments which work with community and social care services for children and families, people with disabilities, and the elderly.


Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA) – a state agency which regulates medicines, medical devices and other health products in Ireland to enhance public and veterinary health.


Rural Development, Agriculture & Conservation

National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) – a part of the Heritage Division of the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, the NPWS is charged with implementing legislation related to nature conservation and to manage Ireland’s national parks and wildlife reservations.


Sport & Recreation

Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport – established in 2011, this government department oversees transportation structures such as Irish Rail, Bus Éireann, maritime regulation and aviation, as well as implementing national tourism and sport strategies in Ireland.



Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) – established in 2011, this department implements government policy affecting children and youth affairs. Tusla is under this department’s remit. Key responsibilities include: implementing Children First legislation, implementing the National Policy Framework for Children and Young People “Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures,” and to publish the National Youth and Participation Strategies.


Tusla – formerly known as the Child and Family Agency, Tusla is a dedicated government agency for child protection, and early intervention and family support. It executes and enforces the Children First Act 2015.

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