Thursday, 11 July 2019
Department of Defence
Naval Service Staff
91. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence his views on the personnel welfare and safety concerns highlighted by the commanding flag officer with two Naval Service ships docked; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30577/19]
Last Friday, I received a full briefing from Military Management, including senior Naval Service personnel, about ongoing issues in the Naval Service. At the briefing it was reconfirmed that LÉ Eithne and LÉ Orla are in dock for planned maintenance and repair. During this period, the Flag Officer has used the opportunity to move personnel from these vessels to others. This is a prudent step to take.
I emphasised that as we deal with these issues, the safety of serving personnel must be the number one priority. A meeting of a joint civil and military team has been arranged to discuss the issues at hand and to plan ahead to ensure we maximise operational outputs.
The Government is fully mindful of the staffing and personnel issues that are facing the Naval Service and is focusing on returning the Naval Service to its full capacity.