No funding for WALK PEER – Minister should resign: Adams

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin Louth Gerry Adams TD, today (Wednesday) raised the difficulties faced by citizens with disabilities and in particular the future of the Louth based WALK PEER project with the Taoiseach during Leaders Questions.

The Louth TD revealed that he had met with Minister McGrath on Tuesday to discuss funding for WALK PEER. Teachta Adams told the Dáil that “if Minister McGrath can’t find the funding he should resign.”

Gerry Adams also urged the Taoiseach to ensure that Budget 2017 is “fair to citizens with disabilities, their families and carers.  A person with a disability should have the same rights as everyone else.”

The text of the statement:

“The Programme for Government commits that ‘persons with disabilities should be supported to maximise their potential, by removing barriers which impact on access to services, education, work and healthcare’. 

“That’s the rhetoric. The reality is different. In 2011, the Taoiseach said disability services would not be cut, but then savagely cut these supports.

“In my own constituency of Louth and east Meath, the impact of those cuts is evident, particularly for the 5,000 citizens of Louth with an intellectual disability.  The WALK PEER project enables young people with a disability to access opportunities in mainstream education, training and employment within their communities.

“It was one of the fourteen Disability Activation Schemes jointly funded by the Department of Social Protection and the European Social Fund, until funding was withdrawn in a move that made no sense whatsoever.

“Only one project has survived – it is based in Louth. After intense lobbying by parents, carers and the young people it received temporary funding until Christmas.

“WALKPEER has undertaken fantastic work in fostering vital links between young citizens and employers, educators and the wider community. It is fully in line with the government’s strategy, as set out in the Disability Act 2004, the National Disability Strategy 2015-2020, the EPSEN Act and the ‘Comprehensive Employment Strategy for People with Disabilities’.

“WALKPEER would cost €300,000 annually, provided from across six Departments. It makes economic sense, especially in the context of the almost 600,000 people who are living with a disability in the State; over half of whom are of working age, and many of whom want a pathway to employment. The WALKPEER model provides that pathway.

“The ‘Comprehensive Employment Strategy for People with Disabilities’ has been on a shelf for ten years now without funding allocated to it. A committee was set up in October 2015 to examine the benefits and future of Disability Activation Schemes. Thus far, the committee hasn’t issued a report. This is hardly surprising. It has only met twice.

“One of the participants in WALKPEER – a young woman – has recently gained a place in college. A young man wants to be an usher here in Leinster House. A young woman who was suicidal is now training to be a make-up artist.

“These citizens and their families have the right to the modest support that is required. I met Minister Finian McGrath on this issue on Tuesday. I wish him well, but in my view, if he can’t get funding for this project he should resign from the government.

“This year’s budget is an opportunity to correct some of these injustices and the government should outline the steps it is going to take in this year’s budget to address the urgent need for real support for citizens with disabilities, their families and carers.”

 

Join the Protest against Brexit – Adams

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin Louth TD Gerry Adams has called for support for the protest next Saturday October 8th at 3pm at the Old Customs Post at Carrickcarnon.

The protest is one of six being held along the border from Derry to North Louth and is organised by the group – Border Communities against Brexit.

Teachta Adams said:

“There is no doubt that border communities will be among the worst hit if the North is forced out of the EU.

The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) reveal that the border region, at 14.1%, has the highest proportion of people up to the age of 59 in a jobless household.

Social Justice Ireland, in its Employment Monitor has also warned that the border region and the west are falling behind other regions in providing employment. It warned that ‘such disparities are unsustainable and harmful to our long-term economic prospects.’

The campaign group, Border Communities Against Brexit, which is made up of trade unionists, the business community, community groups, charities, disability campaigners and others is holding a day of action against Brexit at six locations right along the border from Derry to Dundalk on Saturday October 8 at 3pm. I would urge citizens to support this protest.”

The Louth TD added:

“Brexit is one of the biggest issues facing the island of Ireland in the immediate future. The Taoiseach told me this week that he intends holding his ‘forum’ or ‘conversation’, on how we as an island respond to Brexit, in November.

I welcome Enda Kenny’s expression of full support for the Remain vote in the North this week in the Dáil and his commitment to advocate for the right of the people of the North to remain in the EU.”

Ba cheart an Ghaeilge a chothú agus gealltanais a chomhlíonadh – Adams

DSC_3254_6510Beidh Uachtarán Shinn Féin, Gerry Adams TD i Ráth Cairn anocht ag labhairt ag ócáid oscailte deireadh seachtaine de dhíospóireacht agus plé chun comóradh a dhéanamh ar chéad bliain ó Éirí Amach na Cásca 1916 agus ar chúig bliana is tríocha ó na stailceanna ocrais sna H-blocanna  i 1981.
Tá an deaireadh seachtaine eagraithe ag Cumann Shinn Féin Ráth Cairn agus is trí Gheailge a reachtálfar na himeachtaí ar fad.
Ag labhairt dó ar fhás na Gaeilge le blianta beaga anuas dúirt Gerry Adams “tá ag teipeadh ar Rialtas na Breataine, Acht na Gaeilge a thabhairt isteach de réir Chomhaontú Chill Rímhinn. Tá dualgas ar an Rialtas in Átha Cliath brú a chur ar Rialtas na Breataine seo a chomhlíonadh.”

Dúirt Teachta Adams:

Anois tá pobal na Gaeilge atá beo bríomhar sa tuaisceart. Chuidig Bobby agus a chomradaithe leis an fás seo a chur ar bun.

Ar ndóigh, ná déanaimis dearmad go bhfuil daoine ann ató go foill in aghaidh na Gaeilge ó thuaidh. Tá siad in aghaidh Acht na Gaeilge agus oideachas trí Ghaeilge a mhaoiniú.

Go sonrach, tá ag teipeadh ar Rialtas na Breataine, Acht na Gaeilge a thabhairt isteach de réir Chomhaontú Chill Rímhinn. Tá dualgas ar an Rialtas in Átha Cliath brú a chur ar Rialtas na Breataine seo a chomhlíonadh.

Chomh maith le sin, tá imní orm faoi chinntí Aire Oideachais an DUP, Peter Weir maidir le hoideachas trí mheán na Gaeilge.

Sa deisceart, á Sinn Féin ag tacú le Aire sinsir a cheapadh chuig an Rialtas a bheadh freagrach as an Ghaeilge agus an Ghaeltacht.

Chomh maith le sin, i moltaí buiséid Shinn Féin atá á sheoladh ag Pearse Doherty ar Dé Máirt, tá beartas ar fiú ceathair-deág milliún euro don Gaeilge a chur chun cinn againn.

Ina measc tá méadú cúig milliún do chiste caipitil Udarás na Gaeltachta, méadú beagnach ocht milliún do Foras na Gaeilge agus  milliún go leith do phleanáil na teanga.

Creideann Sinn Féin gur choir cearta teanga a chosaint trí tiomant a rinneadh faoi reachtaíocht ón Eoraip a chur i bhfeidhm ag leibhéal áitiúil.

Ba cheart go mbeadh an ceart ag daoine a gcuid gnó a dhéanamh trí Ghaeilge leis na Ranna Stáit agus Rialtais áitiúil.

Ba cheart go mbeadh sé de rogha ag achan duine átá ag iarraidh oideachas trí mheán na Gaeilge ón naíscoil ar aghaidh chuig oideachas iarchéime, sin a fhail gan cheist.

Cé go bhfuilimid ag leanúint ar aghaidh ag iarraidh cearta teanga a bhaint amach, is é an obair a rinne na Gaeilgeoirí dílseacha a bhain amach go leor dá bhfuil again inniu.

Sin é bunús Ghluaiseacht na Gaeilge. An meon sin “ná abair é, dean é”. Maith sibh as an obair sin. Caifhidh méid tacú leis an obair sin.

Irish language must be nurtured and commitments delivered – Adams

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD is in Ráth Cairn in County Meath this evening speaking at the opening event of a weekend of debate and discussion to mark the centenary of the Easter Rising of 1916 and the 35th anniversary of the H-Block hunger strike of 1981.

The weekend has been organised by Cumann Shinn Féin Ráth Cairn and all of the contributions will be as Gaeilge.

Speaking on the growth of the Irish language in recent years Gerry Adams said “there is the failure by the British Government to deliver on the commitment of the St. Andrew’s Agreement to introduce an Acht na Gaeilge and there is a particular onus on the Irish government to demand that this commitment is honoured.”

Teachta Adams said:

“There is now a thriving, vibrant activist community in the North. Bobby Sands and his comrades helped create the conditions for this growth.

Of course, it is important to remember that there is still opposition to the Irish language in that part of the island most obviously to the introduction of an Acht na Gaeilge and the resourcing of Irish medium education.

There is the failure by the British government to deliver on the commitment of the St. Andrew’s Agreement to introduce an Acht na Gaeilge and there is a particular onus on the Irish government to demand that this commitment is honoured.

I also have very real concerns about the decisions of DUP Education Minister Peter Weir in respect of Irish medium education.

In the south, Sinn Féin supports the appointment of a senior government Minister for the Irish language at the cabinet with responsibility for the Irish language and the Gaeltacht.

In addition to that, in Sinn Féin’s pre-budget submission that Pearse Doherty will outline on Tuesday, we are promoting a package of €14 million in investment in the Irish language.

Included in our proposals is the provision of €5 million in additional capital funding for Udarás na Gaeltachta, almost €8 million in additional funding for Foras na Gaeilge and €1.5million in funding for language planning.

Sinn Féin believes that language rights must be protected through the implementation by public authorities of the commitments made under EU Legislation.

Irish speakers must have the right to conduct their business through Irish with all local government and state departments.

The provision of education through the medium of Irish, from pre-school through to post-graduate studies, should be available North and South to those who choose it.

While the struggle to attain full Irish language rights for all citizens has to continue it is a fact that the progress that has been made in recent years is primarily down to the diligence, vision and hard work of Gaelgóirí and that progress has to continue.

That is how the Irish language movement has been built. The attitude of ‘don’t just say it, do it’. That’s the work we must continue doing”

Ba cheart an Ghaeilge a chothú agus gealltanais a chomhlíonadh – Adams


Beidh Uachtarán Shinn Féin, Gerry Adams TD i Ráth Cairn anocht ag labhairt ag ócáid oscailte deireadh seachtaine de dhíospóireacht agus plé chun comóradh a dhéanamh ar chéad bliain ó Éirí Amach na Cásca 1916 agus ar chúig bliana is tríocha ó na stailceanna ocrais sna H-blocanna  i 1981.
Tá an deaireadh seachtaine eagraithe ag Cumann Shinn Féin Ráth Cairn agus is trí Gheailge a reachtálfar na himeachtaí ar fad.
Ag labhairt dó ar fhás na Gaeilge le blianta beaga anuas dúirt Gerry Adams “tá ag teipeadh ar Rialtas na Breataine, Acht na Gaeilge a thabhairt isteach de réir Chomhaontú Chill Rímhinn. Tá dualgas ar an Rialtas in Átha Cliath brú a chur ar Rialtas na Breataine seo a chomhlíonadh.”

Dúirt Teachta Adams:

Anois tá pobal na Gaeilge atá beo bríomhar sa tuaisceart. Chuidig Bobby agus a chomradaithe leis an fás seo a chur ar bun.

Ar ndóigh, ná déanaimis dearmad go bhfuil daoine ann ató go foill in aghaidh na Gaeilge ó thuaidh. Tá siad in aghaidh Acht na Gaeilge agus oideachas trí Ghaeilge a mhaoiniú.

Go sonrach, tá ag teipeadh ar Rialtas na Breataine, Acht na Gaeilge a thabhairt isteach de réir Chomhaontú Chill Rímhinn. Tá dualgas ar an Rialtas in Átha Cliath brú a chur ar Rialtas na Breataine seo a chomhlíonadh.

Chomh maith le sin, tá imní orm faoi chinntí Aire Oideachais an DUP, Peter Weir maidir le hoideachas trí mheán na Gaeilge.

Sa deisceart, á Sinn Féin ag tacú le Aire sinsir a cheapadh chuig an Rialtas a bheadh freagrach as an Ghaeilge agus an Ghaeltacht.

Chomh maith le sin, i moltaí buiséid Shinn Féin atá á sheoladh ag Pearse Doherty ar Dé Máirt, tá beartas ar fiú ceathair-deág milliún euro don Gaeilge a chur chun cinn againn.

Ina measc tá méadú cúig milliún do chiste caipitil Udarás na Gaeltachta, méadú beagnach ocht milliún do Foras na Gaeilge agus  milliún go leith do phleanáil na teanga.

Creideann Sinn Féin gur choir cearta teanga a chosaint trí tiomant a rinneadh faoi reachtaíocht ón Eoraip a chur i bhfeidhm ag leibhéal áitiúil.

Ba cheart go mbeadh an ceart ag daoine a gcuid gnó a dhéanamh trí Ghaeilge leis na Ranna Stáit agus Rialtais áitiúil.

Ba cheart go mbeadh sé de rogha ag achan duine átá ag iarraidh oideachas trí mheán na Gaeilge ón naíscoil ar aghaidh chuig oideachas iarchéime, sin a fhail gan cheist.

Cé go bhfuilimid ag leanúint ar aghaidh ag iarraidh cearta teanga a bhaint amach, is é an obair a rinne na Gaeilgeoirí dílseacha a bhain amach go leor dá bhfuil again inniu.

Sin é bunús Ghluaiseacht na Gaeilge. An meon sin “ná abair é, dean é”. Maith sibh as an obair sin. Caifhidh méid tacú leis an obair sin.

Louth/Meath to benefit from National Counselling Service additional €500,000 funding


DSC_3254_6510TD for Louth and East Meath Gerry Adams has received confirmation from the HSE that an additional €500,000 has been allocated across the State to the National Counselling Service.

Earlier in September Teachta Adams had raised the unacceptable waiting times for the National Counselling Service, which provides counselling for adults who experienced abuse while in the care of the State as children.

Gerry Adams said;

“I was horrified to learn that these vulnerable individuals, who were failed by the State when they were under its protection as children, were being failed again through these totally unacceptable waiting times for vital counselling therapy.

“In some areas people were waiting 16 months after their initial assessment to access a counsellor.  This is an outrageous length of time for someone who is experiencing mental health problems, has requested help and has been assessed as needing therapy.

“In Louth & Meath the HSE has confirmed that with this extra money counselling has been offered to 28 individuals who had been on the waiting list for longer than 10 months.

“As a result of this additional funding – though it is far too little to meet the need – the waiting list in County Louth has reduced from 13 months to 10 months.

“While it is positive news that additional once off funding has been allocated to the National Counselling Service, it does not solve the problem.

“Vulnerable people should not have to wait for counselling and I will continue to lobby the Minister for Health to invest appropriately in this service.”