Pauline O’Reilly


Spokesperson for Education and Higher Education

Pauline O’Reilly is an Irish Green Party politician, who was elected to Seanad Éireann in April 2020.


My vision for Galway West

A clean, green Galway with sustainable housing and infrastructure, a healthy environment, transport that works, and real choice in education for our children.

What I stand for

Care: As a society, too often we fail to listen to the voices of carers and parents. I stand for really hearing our children and vulnerable adults.

Sustainability: I stand for a sustainable energy future, where our power is owned by our communities. I’m for well designed housing and infrastructure for Galway.

Education: I believe in real choice in the way we educate our children.

My priorities

Environment: The time has come to have a strong voice in Galway for sustainable development, safe green spaces and a healthy environment for our children. Ireland is being left behind in the global race for renewables and risking big EU fines for our carbon emissions. We need real energy reform and support for the new industries of solar and wind energy.

Transport: We need to implement a strong policy on transport, including frequent buses and more rail. As the city grows, we need to combat traffic congestion with the pathways and facilities to make cycling a real option for more of us. We need greenways to improve the liveability of our towns and villages, as well as making Galway a more attractive tourist destination.

Housing: Well designed, properly planned housing and infrastructure can make life better for all of us.

Education options: Galway is the most diverse city in an increasingly diverse Ireland. We need more inclusive, multi-denominational options in education.

My experience

My political journey began in 2019 when I was elected to Galway City as a Councillor for the Green Party. In 2020 I was elected as a Senator to Seanad Éireann. In 2022 I was later selected to be the current Chair of the Green Party. I am the Green Party’s spokesperson for Education, while also being a member of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Climate Action. I am the Vice Chair of the Oireachtas’s Committee on Gender Equality and the Chair of the newly established Breastfeeding Committee. I have previously been in a voluntary position within the University of Galway as a board member, the chair and founder of Cuan na Gaillimhe National School, chairperson of Home Education Network Ireland and a board member of Galway Community Circus and Leisureland. Prior to my career in Politics, I was a family law solicitor in Galway.