Tuesday, 20 June 2006
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Connolly: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the Health Service Executive-commissioned Teamwork Management Services report, “Improving Safety and Achieving Better Standards: An Action Plan for Health Services in the North East”, which seriously diminishes accident and emergency services in the region’s five hospitals by centralising these services in a single new regional hospital on an as yet unannounced site; the implications this will have for those patients not receiving treatment within the timespan of the “golden hour”; the likely fatal consequences for those patients who do not receive intravenous anti-thrombotic medication as soon as possible to prevent a further heart attack; the proposed deployment of visiting consultants for the region’s general hospitals; the report’s recommendation of fewer acute beds, which conflicts with the Hanly report’s recommendation of a nationwide need of an additional 3,000 acute beds; and the inexcusable omission in the current climate of any reference to cross-Border co-operation in the provision of the region’s hospital services.
Ms C. Murphy: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the recent surveys conducted at St. James’s Hospital, which have shown that as many as 15%, or 50,000 of those teenagers under 18 years of age who have been screened at clinics have been found to have a sexually transmitted disease, many of whom will be unaware there is a problem; the need for major spending to tackle the problem identified by a leading expert at the hospital because, due to pressure on the service, people are being turned away at present; and, given the recent legislation passed, the possibility that teenage boys will no longer present for screening, which will result in their health being put at risk, as well as additions to the cycle of infection.
Mr. Naughten: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, as the European Commissioner for Trade, Peter Mandelson, is offering more concessions on agriculture at the world trade talks contrary to the stated policy of the EU Commission and Heads of State, there is an immediate need for the Taoiseach and Minister for Agriculture and Food to outline the fruitless steps they have taken over the past six weeks to ensure that the EU and the Commissioner abide by their commitments to European farmers; to immediately impress on the Commission the need to introduce food safety standards as part of the negotiations; and for the Government to publish its assessment of the impact that the Doha round will have on the various elements of the economy.
Mr. Crawford: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the proposal of the Health Service Executive to centralise all tertiary care in the north-eastern region into Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda within three months; the absence of facilities to deal with the increased load on the staff in Drogheda; the absence of advanced paramedics or ambulances which would also put the population at serious risk; and the need to recognise that this constitutes an overall national plan which the HSE intends to deliver and which will have a serious effect on smaller hospitals.
Aengus Ó Snodaigh: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the shameful failure of the Government to introduce a formal, transparent and accountable system of complementary protections, the pressing need for which stems from the fact that the definition of refugee is outdated, is a Cold War construct and is too narrow to afford protection to all those in genuine need of it today — World Refugee Day 2006 — and the need for substantial revision of the Dublin II regulations to ensure that the rights of asylum seekers and refugees are protected as proposed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees last April.
Mr. Broughan: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the urgent need for the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform to put effective measures in place to enable the Garda Síochána to tackle the criminal gangs plaguing our society following the horrific murder of a 22 year old man in Donaghmede on Sunday evening, given that north-eastern Dublin is experiencing an unprecedented level of gun crime whereby this latest brutal attack is the sixth murder in the area in six months, and given that the Garda chief superintendent seeks political leadership from the Taoiseach on this matter.
Dr. Cowley: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the need for the Department of Social and Family Affairs to extend free travel to older Irish emigrants, or at the very least to Irish pensioners living in the United Kingdom when they return to Ireland on holidays.
Mr. Stagg: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the reply given in the Dáil by the Minister for Education and Science to the Labour Party spokesperson on education, Deputy O’Sullivan, which showed that nationally, the teacher-pupil ratio is at an alarmingly high level and that in particular, the pupil-teacher ratio in County Kildare shows that nearly 30% or 6,351 national school children in the county are in classes of 30 to 34 pupils, and that 531 pupils are in classes of 35 to 39; and to enable the Minister to inform the Dáil how she proposes to keep her promise to reduce all class sizes to 20 pupils per class and to remove Ireland from the invidious position of having the second largest class sizes in Europe with the second lowest expenditure on national primary education in the EU.
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