Louth missing out on FDI jobs – Adams

Sinn Féin Louth TD Gerry Adams has described recent figures on IDA jobs created in Louth and the Border Region as “deeply depressing”. Information provided by the Minister for Jobs in respect of IDA investment raises real concerns about the disparity in such jobs across the state but especially in the Border Region.

Gerry Adams said: “Border counties fare particularly badly in the provision of IDA supported jobs and with the Brexit already having an adverse impact on the economy, that situation could get worse without proper planning and funding by government.”

Teachta Adams said:

“Earlier this week my colleague Maurice Quinlivan identified serious gaps in the provision of IDA backed jobs across the state based on responses he received to Parliamentary Questions.

When analysed and set again the recent census population numbers it emerged that there is 1 IDA supported job for every 23 citizens in the state. However, this statistic varies significantly depending on where you live. For example, Galway and Cork top the list for most IDA jobs per capita, with 1 job for every 15 people, followed by Dublin with 1 job for every 16 people.

“Those living in the six border region counties, including Louth, are between two and five times worse off than areas like Dublin and Cork. The disparity for Monaghan is 1 job for every 447 people. For Donegal it is 1 job – 52 people. Cavan is 1 job – 63 people. Louth is 1 job for 35 people. Sligo is 1 job for every 28 people and Monaghan is 1 job for every 447 people.

“In Dublin, 9,000 new jobs were added in 2016, but in Louth the figure was 453. In Sligo the net gain was 190. In Cavan it was 41. In Leitrim it was 3. In Donegal it was 145. While in Monaghan the number of IDA jobs created in 2016 was 7.

“That means the six acknowledged border counties secured a miserly net gain of 839 IDA supported jobs in the border county out of 18,627 IDA backed jobs across the state in 2016.

“The IDA does huge work in creating new jobs. Over the decades it has proven itself to be an invaluable agency in attracting investment into the state. However, there is a huge imbalance in the distribution of these jobs across the state. The responsibility for this must rest with the government. It must ensure that investment and jobs are evenly distributed throughout the state and especially between large urban centres and rural and border regions.

“Border counties fare particularly badly in this analysis and, with the Brexit already having an adverse impact on the economy, that situation could get worse without proper planning and funding by government.”

Note: Please note IDA Jobs (2016) is total number of IDA jobs in each county in that year.

 

Threatened services at Daisy Hill jeopardises Cross Border Healthcare – Adams

Louth Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams has said that any reduction in services at Newry’s Daisy Hill Hospital will have a detrimental impact on his constituents and on healthcare provision in Louth.

Gerry Adams said;

“The Southern Health and Social Care Trust have stated that the temporary overnight closure of the Emergency Department at Daisy Hill Hospital is being considered due to staffing issues.

“People living in the Newry, South Armagh and Down areas are naturally concerned that if this happens it will be the thin end of the wedge for further closures and diminishment of services at Daisy Hill, which may result in the eventual closure of the hospital.

“In Louth we have witnessed a similar chain of events which has resulted in the closure of the Emergency Department and a host of other services at the Louth County Hospital in Dundalk.

“The corollary of this is a massive increase in demand placed on Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, where sufficient extra capacity was not introduced. This is now manifest in increased waiting times for in patient and outpatient treatment, huge numbers of people on trollies, long waits for emergency treatment, stress for patients and staff and staff shortages.

“There are a significant number of people from Louth and across all of the border counties who, through the EU funded Cooperation and Working Together (CAWT) project, access treatment at Daisy Hill Hospital.

“Arrangements are in place for cross border ENT, Urology and Vascular treatment as well as Kidney Dialysis and of course the Emergency Department.  This is all in jeopardy in the event of service reduction in Daisy Hill and this will place even more of a strain on Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital.

“I have written to the Health Minister Simon Harris to alert him to this situation and I have also written to the Chairperson of the Southern Health and Social Care Trust, Roberta Brownlee, to urge a swift resolution to this matter and the full retention of services at Daisy Hill Hospital.”

‘Support Palestinian Prisoners’ Protest on Wednesday

Louth Sinn Féin have organised a protest for Wednesday afternoon at 4pm at the Market Square in Dundalk to highlight the plight of Palestinian prisoners.

1,500 Palestinian political prisoners launched a mass hunger strike on 17th April and say they are determined to fast until the death or until they get basic demands as conditions in the Israeli prisons deteriorate to a new low.

There are currently 6,500 Palestinian prisoners being held by Israel including more than 500 ‘administrative detainees’.  These are detainees that have been arrested on ‘secret evidence’ and are not aware of what they are accused of and are not allowed to even defend themselves in court.

A spokesperson for Louth Sinn Féin said “we are concerned and want to highlight the contravention of International Humanitarian Law, which says that prisoners from

file photo from Dundalk 2014

occupied territories must be held in that occupied territory. That law is being broken here, these prisoners are being held in Israel and their families are regularly being denied entry into Israel, so the prisoners are further isolated from family and support.”

The spokesperson continued “as we approach the 36th anniversary of Bobby Sands, I would ask everyone to attend the protest on Wednesday at 4pm and show your support for the Palestinian prisoners and highlight the injustice of their situation. We went through it before in 1981, show your solidarity for these hunger strikers in 2017.”

Their demands include:

  • Installation of a public telephone to allow communication with their families
  • To resume bi-monthly family visits
  • To increase the duration of the visits
  • Allow prisoners to take photographs with their families
  • To end deliberate ‘medical negligence’  (more than 50 prisoners have died owing to medical negligence inside Israeli jails)

 

Wednesday, 26th April, Market Square, Dundalk at 4pm – Everyone Welcome

 

RTÉ Investigates report requires recall of Dáil – Gerry Adams TD

Following the broadcast of the RTÉ Investigates programme tonight, Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD has said that the circumstances surrounding the murder of Garda Tony Golden, the attempted murder of Siobhan Phillips and the suicide of Crevan Mackin warrant a criminal investigation.

Deputy Adams also called for the Dáil to be recalled next week to allow the Minister for Justice to make a statement on the matter and to answer questions.

He said;

“The murder of Garda Tony Golden, the attempted murder of Siobhan Phillips, and the suicide of Crevan Mackin raise serious and fundamental questions about the role of elements of An Garda Síochána in the circumstances surrounding his arrest in January 2015 and the events in Omeath in October of that year.

“The evidence would indicate that Crevan Mackin was working as a Garda agent at the time of his arrest in January 2015 or subsequent to it. As a result the Gardaí did not charge him with firearms and explosives offences which he admitted to during his questioning in Dundalk Garda station. Subsequently his bail was significantly reduced and he was released from Portlaoise Prison.

“The Garda also failed to thoroughly investigate the information in their possession about other weapons which Mackin had access to.

“Answers must also be provided as to why Gardaí, at both Dundalk and Carlingford stations, refused to register a complaint or to take a statement from Siobhan Phillips when she was visibly scarred, slashed and frightened for her life as a result of serious abuse by Mackin. Her parents, who accompanied her, were also fearful for their daughter’s safety and indeed for their own lives.

“I have previously written to Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald on eight occasions, to the Taoiseach four times, and to GSOC three times, to express my grave concerns regarding this case.

“Given the information I provided, I would have expected Minister Fitzgerald and the Taoiseach, after a reasonable period of time, to ensure a proper investigation into the circumstances which led to the shooting of Garda Golden and Siobhan Phillips took place.

“The responses of both the Taoiseach and Minister for Justice have been unsatisfactory.

“I have never received any indication that the government was taking this matter seriously.

“Given that it was known by some senior figures in An Garda Síochána that Crevan Mackin had access to weapons Siobhan Phillips and Garda Golden should not have been placed in this perilous situation.

“The arrest, interrogation and subsequent treatment of Crevan Mackin, an individual with known serious mental health issues, was entirely inappropriate.

“All of the families affected by this need to have truth about the circumstances of Crevan Mackin’s arrest, questioning, charging and relationship with An Garda Síochána.

“Those responsible must be held accountable and, if necessary, they must face a criminal investigation and possibly charges.

“The Taoiseach must now recall the Dáil for next week so that the Minister for Justice can make a full statement and take questions on this very serious matter.”

Cllr Kenneth Flood Gets Tough on Illegal Dumping

With illegal dumping on the increase throughout Drogheda, Sinn Féin Cllr. Kenneth Flood has been raising the issue at Drogheda Municipal District Meetings over the past months.

Commenting Cllr. Flood said

“The director of services for operations confirmed to me that Louth County Council was disposing of 22 tonnes of waste left at council bins per month. That is an increase of 8 tonnes previously.

“The council have been proactive in attempting to catch offenders who illegally leave domestic waste at public bins by adding a weekend roster of litter wardens and by liaising with the waste disposal companies to ensure that every household in the county does in fact have their waste collected, as they are required to do by law.

“But they have also confirmed that although the litter wardens do examine as much of the illegally dumped waste as possible and fines have indeed been issued to offenders, the amount of illegally dumped domestic waste is just too vast for the litter wardens to examine fully.

“I contend that illegally dumping domestic waste is an affront to our town and countryside. I am aware that the introduction of domestic waste charges has added a financial burden on struggling families, but much of what is being dumped could be recycled at a minimal cost to the householder.

“Louth County Council should initiate a waste information campaign highlighting the fines and penalties that offenders will incur but also listing cost saving measures and Council Sites where recyclable domestic waste can be disposed of cheaply and legally.

“In the past, the council had a magazine called Eco News, that listed all the information any householder would need on properly disposing of their waste, but that was discontinued.

I have submitted a motion for May’s Drogheda Municipal District Meeting asking for this information campaign to be initiated and I intend to follow through until we turn the tide against illegal dumping”.

Link for newsletter

https://www.louthcoco.ie/en/Services/Environment/Forms/EcoNews-Issue-6.pdf

Here is the motion for upcoming Council meeting,

With illegal dumping on the increase in The Drogheda Municipal District, this council will initiate an information campaign, to run in tandem with The Councils increased enforcement efforts,  listing recycling and bring bank centres in The Drogheda Municipal District and what is allowed to be disposed of there, the reintroduction of Louth County Council’s Eco News, and a local media campaign listing the fines and penalties that offenders will incur and detailing Louth County Councils recycling points.