Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Joint Committee On Children, Equality, Disability, Integration And Youth

Experiences of Migrant Communities Engaging with the Healthcare System and State Bodies: Discussion

Photo of Jennifer Murnane O'ConnorJennifer Murnane O'Connor (Carlow-Kilkenny, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

I apologise that I had to go back and forth to the Chamber. I thank our guests. I listened to as much of the meeting as I could and we have all learned a lot. Many of the questions I had intended to ask have been asked. The biggest issue today has related to communication and the language barrier, something we need to address. I know from working with my local authority that there are language barriers and we need to address that. We need to put more funding into the various Departments, whether in regard to healthcare or social protection. We all need to ensure there will be funding in order that language will cease to be a barrier.

Women's refuges were mentioned. In my area, Carlow, we do not have one. It is so important that every county has a women's refuge, and that too needs to be addressed.

As I said, my questions have been asked, so I say, "Well done" to our guests. This is about awareness and we need to highlight the issue. There is a lack of communication and we in the Oireachtas need to address that. It is beginning to happen - I can see changes - but we need much more change. I was very impressed by the yellow stickers idea, another issue for which funding is required. All these initiatives are so important. Something small like that can make such a difference and we need to examine it. Our guests spoke about Covid.