Seanad debates

Tuesday, 9 July 2024

An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business

 

1:00 pm

Photo of Tom ClonanTom Clonan (Independent)

I echo the expressions of sympathy to the family of our former colleague, Senator O'Mahony.Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

I echo the condemnation of Russia's attack on the children's hospital in Kyiv. It was part of two waves of missiles that were fired at Kyiv yesterday. In the first wave, the Russians fired what NATO designated AS103 Kodiak missiles. These are very sophisticated and they have a GLONASS, which is a variant of a GPS guidance system that gives them a 7 m to 10 m error or accuracy ratio, so there is no mistaking that this hospital was targeted. The payload of such a weapon is 400 kg of high explosive. To fire that into a hospital with children with disabilities and children receiving treatment for cancer is bestial. We should call on Vladimir Putin, those who empower him and the ambassador in Ireland to account for this.

On the subject of children's hospitals, it is two years since €19 million was allocated to end the waiting list for children suffering on the scoliosis and spinal surgery waiting list. As I speak, two years later, there are 281 children still on that waiting list. There are also dozens of children who are going to go on that list because, at the moment, the annual reviews of spinal issues are not being carried out because there is no spinal surgeon in Temple Street Hospital, which is only examining hips. This is a national crisis and an international scandal. It is shameful. We really need to press the Government on this. At their party meetings, Members should press upon their colleagues the need for meaningful action on this. The board and the executive function of CHI need to be reviewed and removed because they are not fit for purpose.

I ask colleagues to support the criminal barristers in their attempt to have pay restoration and equity in their pay. They are taking the almost unprecedented step of withdrawing their services. This is central to the proper administration of justice and confidence in our criminal justice system.

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