Taoiseach must deliver accommodation for mental health in Dundalk – Adams

Louth Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams has today raised with the Taoiseach the lack of accommodation for mental health services in north County Louth.

Speaking during Leaders Questions in the Dáil, Teachta Adams said;

“On Friday, along with my Louth Sinn Féin colleague Teachta Imelda Munster, I visited the Department of Psychiatry acute in-patient unit in Drogheda.

“This is a world class, state of the art facility which provides intensive short term treatment.

“Patients are then discharged to the community mental health staff for follow up care.

“However in North Louth, community based psychiatric services are practically non-existent and all provision is delivered from a 60 year old building at Ladywell, Louth Hospital, Dundalk.

“Because of issues of damp and the lack of suitable space, much of Ladywell is unusable.

“This means that there is no Child and Adolescent Mental Health provision and no Psychiatry of Old Age in North Louth.

“Additional staff have been allocated to the area and I welcome that, but there is no accommodation for them in Dundalk.

“Unacceptably patients must travel, sometimes up to 60 kilometers, to Ardee or Drogheda to access these basic mental health services.

“There is a longstanding promise of a Primary Care Centre with a facility for community mental health for Dundalk.

“But there is no start date, nothing but a worthless promise which is used to excuse the refusal to upgrade Ladywell.

“I presented the Taoiseach with a choice, either deliver the Primary Care Centre as soon as possible or upgrade the building at Ladywell.

“I have asked both the Taoiseach and the Minister for Mental Health Helen McEntee to visit Ladywell to see first-hand how unsuitable the premises is.

“I will continue to raise this issue until the citizens of North Louth have access to necessary services in suitable premises in their own area.”

 

David Saurin co-opted onto Louth County Council

Out-going councillor Alan Cassidy has extended his congratulations to his replacement on the Louth County Council, his long-time friend and comrade, David Saurin.

At this morning’s meeting of the Council, the co-option was confirmed and Cllr Saurin took his seat.

Cllr David Saurin (48) hails from Tullyallen and is married to Anne and they have three children.

Speaking this morning, Cllr Saurin said “it is a great honour to be representing the people of South Louth and I am proud to be sitting on Louth County Council with nine other Sinn Féin councillors supported by two TDs and an MEP.  I have been a member of Sinn Féin for almost twenty years now and have been a republican all my life.”

“I have been part of more elections than I care to remember, the most recent being the election of a former councillor here, Imelda Munster who made history by becoming the first female TD for Louth and East Meath.”

“Both sides of my family have republican history stretching back to the 1916 Rising and the Tan War so our house was a Republican house but I think for me, the greatest influence and what had the biggest impact on me was the 1980 and 1981 hungerstrikes. The commitment, dedication and dignity with which those young men stood up to the might of the British empire has never left me.”

“The prison struggle since the removal of political status in 1976 and what the blanket men and the women in Armagh went through has inspired me to carry on the fight for equality and justice. Bobby Sands said ‘Everyone, Republican or otherwise, has their own particular part to play. No part is too great or too small; no-one is too old or too young to do something.’”

Cllr Pearse McGeough Welcomes taking in Charge of Estates in Castlebellingham

Sinn Féin Councillor Pearse McGeough has welcomed the decision for two estates in Castlebellingham to be ‘taken in charge’.

 

At last week’s Ardee Municipal Meeting it was agreed that Bellingham Green and Bellingham Close would be taken over by the local authority.

 

Cllr McGeough said “Now that Louth County Council have taken the estates in charge, home owners and residents can now access all the services and protections that their taxes pay for. I know of one estate that in 2014 had its street lights turned off because the developer in cahrge of the estate hadn’t paid its electricity bills. Having your estate ‘taken in charge’ is advantageous to the home-owner.”

Joanna Byrne Welcomes Choice Based Lettings

The Choice Based Lettings Scheme for allocation of Social Housing will come into effect on Tuesday 16th May 2017.

All housing applicants will be issued with letters from the housing department of Louth County council from Monday 8th May 2017 informing them of the new system and issuing them with a username and password.

Regular Transfer Tenants will not be issued with username and passwords.

They will be considered for any vacant housing prior to properties being advertised on the CBL system but HAP tenants on the HAP Transfer list will receive login details the same as regular housing list applicants.

Any vacant properties will be advertised weekly on Tuesday mornings at 10.00am and housing applicants will have until 12.00am the following Monday night to submit an Expression of Interest.

We as Public Representatives of the county will have access to this site to see what houses are available for letting on a weekly basis to inform and assist our constituents.

Sinn Féin Councillor Joanna Byrne and Chairperson of The Housing Strategic Policy Committee for Louth welcomes the implementation of Choice Based Lettings for the County.

Cllr Byrne said: ” I welcome the implementation of the CBL process in Louth. This process will not have a dramatic impact on reducing the numbers on waiting lists, the government still need to invest in the supply of more social housing, it will however speed up the allocation process for any stock that becomes available ”

 

Kenneth Flood Welcomes Estates being ‘Taken in Charge’

Sinn Féin Cllr. Kenneth Flood has welcomed the taking in charge of Aston Village, Termon Abbey, Silk Park and Forest Park estates in Drogheda.

Cllr Flood said “As former Chairperson of the Aston Village Residents Association I can safely say that this was a long and complicated road to get Aston Village and Termon Abbey finally taken in charge. I want to commend the resident’s associations that gave their time and liaised for years with Louth County Council. Pursuing the taking in charge process so vigorously and sequestering the bond to pay for the works was the only way to resolve issues left behind when the developer went under during the crash. I am delighted that all of those issues are resolved and now we can concentrate on traffic calming and some parking issues on the spine road. We will also redouble our efforts to have the roundabout at the entrance to the estate that should have been in place under the conditions of planning for Aston Village so residents can enter and exit the estates safely and freely and look at the pedestrian throughway between Termon Abbey and Aston Village.

I would also like to welcome the taking in charge of Silk Park. Especially as it coincides with my motion to have a yellow box put on The Platin Road at the entrance of the estate to aid residents entering and exiting onto Platin Road. The application to take Silk Park in charge was made back in 2009. Residents have been frustrated by this long and drawn out process. There was a fund introduced last year by central government to aid in the taking in charge of estates but so far Louth County Council have not made an application for funding from it.

Aston Village, Termon Abbey, Silk Park and Forest Park are the first estates taken in charge by Louth County Council in Drogheda in this current council term. There are several more estates that are still in the taking in charge process and I will endeavor to do everything possible to ensure that they are taken in charge as soon as possible”.