Tuesday, 25 April 2006
Requests to move Adjournment of Dáil under Standing Order 31.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to raise a matter of national importance, namely, in light of reports that exotic birds were illegally imported into this country on Good Friday and the failure of the authorities to stop their importation even though information was provided to the Department of Agriculture and Food one week prior to the incident, there is now an urgent need for the Minister for Agriculture and Food to outline the number of birds imported, the steps taken to trace the birds in question, the reason the authorities failed to stop the illegal importation in light of the advance information available, and the measures being put in place to ensure that such illegal importations cease immediately in light of the risk this practice has to act as a vector for avian flu.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss the following matter of urgent public concern: the necessity for the Minister for Health and Children to ensure there is no further downgrading of services at Louth County Hospital, Dundalk, and that paediatric accident and emergency facilities are restored immediately, thus ensuring a minimum health service for children in north Louth.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 on a matter of national and local importance. The Department of Education and Science funded the construction of a 16-teacher school in Naas, County Kildare, Scoil Bríde, but despite the fact there are extremely high pupil-teacher ratios in other primary schools in Naas, that pupils are forced to use gym rooms as classrooms, and that children requiring remedial resources must travel by taxi from Naas to Tallaght, the fully equipped Scoil Bríde, which opened last September, will enrol only two junior infant classes per year.
The only reason for that appalling situation is that the other schools in Naas will not agree a common enrolment policy that would allow the school to be opened fully. Is the Minister for Education and Science, Deputy Hanafin, in charge of our schools, or are they entirely autonomous? I call on her to intervene in this matter immediately to ensure the children of Naas have the best possible start in life and are able to attend a fully staffed school, with lower pupil-teacher ratios and appropriate resources for all. Enrolment policies must not be bargaining tools for school authorities, which should instead focus solely on the child's best interests. I have a petition signed by 4,500 people from Naas to deliver to the Minister for Education and Science.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss the loss of the late Mr. Glenn Cott of Island View, Ballycotton, County Cork, who was drowned in a boating accident off Dunmore East, County Wexford, last month. Mr. Cott, the skipper of a trawler, was accompanied by two Polish nationals, one of whom also perished. To date, the Naval Service has refused to make naval diving units available to assist. I wish the matter to be investigated and the bodies of the men found and returned to their families, whose grief is immense.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to raise the following matter of national and local importance: to ask the Taoiseach and the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the Government's response to a situation that has arisen over the last two weekends in Enniscorthy, County Wexford, where on two separate occasions, members of the Garda Síochána have been attacked and assaulted by members of the public. Those attacks have necessitated the hospitalisation of members of the force. They come against the backdrop of the Enniscorthy district having 41 gardaí on 31 December 1997 and 45 on 31 December 2005, an increase in Garda personnel of just under 10%, despite a significant rise in population, as well as an increase in headline crime of 72% and a fall in detection rates of 57% between 2000 and 2005.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 on the following specific and important matter of public interest requiring urgent consideration: the need for the Government to engage with Greencore plc to prevent the dismantling of the Mallow sugar plant so that it will remain available to provide raw material to produce ethanol from sugar beet or other such energy crops in light of reports that Greencore Limited might be planning to dismantle it very soon and the need for Ireland to develop an alternative energy sector as a matter of urgency.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to address a matter of major national and local importance, namely, the Government's failure to establish an ambulance base in the Mulranny, Achill and Ballycroy areas of County Mayo in keeping with the most basic international standards of emergency ambulance availability, namely, to have an ambulance base available within 20 minutes of a population, so that people's lives might no longer be placed in jeopardy because of ambulance delays caused by the lack of such an essential base for the area.
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 on a specific and important matter of public interest requiring urgent consideration, namely, the imminent extinguishing of market rights under the Casual Trading Act 1995 unless they are exercised before 1 May 2006, and the need to extend that deadline to this autumn.