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The last 5 and hopefully the next 5


I was very conscious as I left last Monday’s Council meeting that it could be my last meeting as a Dublin City Councillor. Aside from those who have chosen not to run again, I think we all probably felt the same as none of us will know for sure where we will stand until all the votes in Friday’s election are counted.

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I really love being a local councillor, working for and with local residents on either individual or community issues, working with local Council officials to resolve/progress issues, trying to change Council policy and ideology or just simply getting local people the information they need to get things done or push things themselves – local empowerment. Basically, it’s about improving our local communities and the way we do things so as to make a difference for the better.

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From listening to local residents, not just during the last few weeks of this local election campaign but over the last five years, the above are priorities are what I will concentrate on if elected over the next five years.

If you’ve read my page entitled My Council Record you’ll get a feel for some of the core issues I’m passionate about. If you’re more into listening in the video below I describe some of the things our Labour Party Group has achieved over the last five years and some of the particular projects I’d like to progress with local communities within my area over the next five. These include a strong environmental agenda, the creation of Teen Spaces, extending Dublin Bikes Scheme out into our area so we can use this great public transport scheme to communt into the city centre and ensuring the Oscar Traynor Land site and other local sites are designed in a sustainable way.

If you have ideas to add to these or to better these please get in contact with me as together we can strive to improve and enhance the communities we live and work in.

If I am the type of person you would like to represent you and work with you for the next 5 years please consider me for your number one vote or highest preference on Friday 24th May.

Thank you!

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At the January meeting of Dublin City Council I proposed an emergency motion seeking an additional 4 ambulances for the Dublin Fire Brigade Emergency Medical Service ( DFB EMS) to resolved their capacity issues and noted concern that the service’s call and dispatch operation might be transferred to/amalgamated with the National Ambulance Service call centre in Tallaght. That concern has now escalated to a significant potential reality, so much so that Dublin Fire Brigade’s initial intention to take industrial action 0ver their capacity issues has turned into a full scale dispute over call and dispatch.

Pertinent to understanding the dispute is understanding how DFB EMS operates. If you make a 999 call from Dublin city or county it goes to a call centre. If you need a fire brigade or an ambulance your call is transferred to the Dublin Fire Brigade call and dispatch centre in Tara St. There it is dealt with according to a highly effective protocol that maximises resources and minimises the threat to life and property.  Here’s why:

Dublin Fire Brigade provides a unique fire-based EMS service that fronts 14 ambulances and supports them with local fire appliances and fire officers. It can provide this service in a most clinically effective and efficient way because all DFB officers are trained paramedics or advanced paramedics. Each officer can bring A&E expertise to the site of any medical emergency. The service operates on a zero-down-time basis meaning crews swap over to accommodate breaks to ensure the DFB ambulances are always on a call. In any one 24 hour period each ambulance could attend to a different incident every hour.


So why change this way of operating?

In 2014 HIQA published a review of Pre-hospital Emergency Care Services in Dublin. Its report highlighted several concerns and made 12 specific recommendations. One of the concerns related to emergency calls ‘dropping’ between the two services i.e. between the DFB EMS call and dispatch in Tara St. and the NAS call and dispatch in Tallaght and the potential risk to lives. DCC’s reaction to this was to consult with the HSE and each of the other 3 Dublin local authority CEOs and as a group unilaterally decided to transfer the DFB call and dispatch service to the NAS in Tallaght. Needless to say without evidence rationale or fire officer consultation there was uproar.

It was decided to form an Expert Panel to examine the HIQA report and its recommendations. It was also agreed to put together an Ambulance Forum consisting of DCC, DFB Senior Management and officer union representatives. The Expert Panel would report and this Forum and it would come to an agreement on the implementation of the recommendations in the Expert Panel’s report. This worked well and agreement was reached on the recommendations relating to the governance and financial arrangements/funding sources. However, the outstanding piece of the jigsaw is how to prevent calls dropping between the two systems.

A technical sub-group was formed with 2 telecommunication experts advising to see how the two systems could talk to each other effectively and safely. A report was drawn up with a series of different options on how to effectively proceed both in the short term and long term. This report was given to the Ambulance Forum. However, DCC pulled out of the Forum before the report could be presented and discussed rendering the Forum’s work incomplete and effectively collapsing the Forum. This raised concerns that DCC’s original plan to amalgamate the two call centres was back on the cards.

In January the Expert Panel made a presentation to the DCC Special Committee on Fire, Ambulance and Emergency Management of which I am Chair. It emphasised that moving DFB call & dispatch would not only be financially inefficient but highly dangerous from a patient safety perspective reiterating that DFB’s call and dispatch is an integral link in the cycle of pre-hospital emergency care management. While the capacity issues remains, this is now the crux of the DFB dispute with DCC. This is what DFB officers are protecting. This is why DFB will be outside City Hall for our March meeting tomorrow evening. This is why DFB voted overwhelmingly to take industrial action two weeks ago.


However, there is a safe and effective telecommunications solution to enable DFB’s call & dispatch in Tara St. to talk to the NAS centre in Tallaght. It can be implemented in a short timeframe and can fully address the concerns in the 2014 HIQA report.

Therefore, there is no rationale for amalgamating the two centres except for the yet to be understood rationale of  DCC. This is why DFB EMS is calling for your support in their campaign.


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Supporting our Pre-hospital Emergency Medical Services


As the trolly count increased in our hospital A&Es, recent days have shown us how much we depend on the effective resourcing of our emergency medical services. However, another crisis is about to emerge in Dublin City and County’s pre-hospital Emergency Medical Services.

We are extremely fortunate to have a world class fire based pre-hospital Emergency Medical Services (EMS) operated by Dublin Fire Brigade. This highly efficient and highly effective service is unique in Ireland but quite common in the US and Canada as well as Europe’s major cities.


Currently Dublin Fire Brigade has 12 ambulances and 23 fire tenders. Both ambulance and fire service crews are fully trained paramedics or advanced paramedics who can bring expert medical care and treatment to the site of any medical emergency. The service includes a call and dispatch service that ensures all crews are effectively deployed to emergencies. Where necessary call & dispatch operators, who are all medically trained, can talk a caller through the administration of CPR until officers arrive.

The service operates on zero down time meaning that ambulances are continuously available 24/7 365 days per year with fire officers deployed to ambulances to cover crew breaks to ensure no break in availability. Last year the service responded to 115,000 calls representing 40% of the national volume, an increase in calls on 2015.


However, an increase in calls and incidents means 12 ambulances are not sufficient to effectively meet needs. Dublin Fire Brigade has evaluated the current situation and indicated that an additional four ambulances would allow the service to safely meet emergency needs arising across its operating area of Dublin City and County.

As Chairperson of Dublin City Council’s Special Committee on Dublin Fire/Ambulance Services and Emergency Management I am presenting an emergency motion to Dublin City Council (Monday 9th January 2017) calling on Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Simon Coveney to make funding available immediately for four additional fully crewed 24/7 ambulances to meet Dublin City and County capacity needs in a safe and effective manner

We currently have a crisis in hospital A&E services, Dublin citizens’ do not need a crisis in pre-hospital emergency medical services!

Text of Motion

That the Members of Dublin City Council acknowledge and commend the effective, integrated, co-ordinated and vital emergency fire and medical service provided by Dublin Fire Brigade to the citizens of Dublin City and the greater Dublin area. The emergency ambulance service in Dublin is a Fire Based Emergency Medical Services (EMS) model which is a unique public safety model reflective of best practice internationally in urban areas and is provided in accordance with Section 25 of the 1981 Fire Services Act. However, the Members note, with concern, that Dublin Fire Brigade Ambulance service is currently operating over capacity, resulting in an unacceptable increase in patient waiting time, and therefore call on DCC management to make an urgent request to the Minister of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government to immediately make funding available for 4 additional fully crewed ambulances to the service, being the minimum number of ambulances needed to meet current and projected short term demand.

The Members also recognise the report of the Expert Panel Report on Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Services Dublin published in December 2015 as an agreed solution to address the recommendations made by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) report into Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Services published in December 2014. However, the Members note, with concern, the suggestion that the Dublin Fire Brigade call and dispatch service based in Tara Street Station would be transferred or amalgamated with the NAS call and dispatch service in Tallaght (not a recommendation of either the 2014 HIQA Report or the Expert Panel Report). In light of the foregoing, the members, through this motion, instruct Dublin City Council management a) to bring any proposal or joint proposal to the attention of the other Dublin local authorities and the Eastern and Midland Regional Assembly as required under Sections 32(2) and 32(3) of the Local Government (Dublin) Act 1993 as the exercise of any change will have a material effect on the metropolitan interest and b) not to agree to any change in the current DFB EMS system of operations unless and until a full consultation with Dublin Fire Brigade and its employee representatives, the DCC Special Committee on Fire/Ambulance and Emergency Management and all members be held and that any changes suggested be subject to agreement of the members of this Council.

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New Priory allows many to realise their dream of a home but not all agree

‘For over 200 local people Priory Hall was a most stressful nightmare that lasted too long before the government of the day and Dublin City Council came to an agreement to take over the development and refurbish it.’
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Pre-refurbishment Priory Hall
‘Part of the agreement reached with all parties, those owner-occupiers, those buy-to-lets and DCC itself, was that the original tenure balance be retained. This effectively meant that the same number of units owned by DCC would be retained by DCC, the owners of the buy-to-lets had a stay on their mortgage and would return to rent their apartments and pay off their mortgages once refurbished and those units owner privately would be sold on the open market to those wishing to but a new home’
‘In September DCC presented the first phase, 60 units, of the refurbishment to the Council chamber for disposal. All DCC owned property proposed for sale must be approved by local councillors. In order to carry out the refurbishment works DCC had to take all units into its ownership so technically while it did not own the property it still had to present the units for approval for disposal.’
‘Recognising the long social housing waiting lists in the local area I proposed an amendment to the proposal seeking to increase the DCC allocation of social housing from 20% to 30% and seeking that 30% of the owner occupier units be sold to those on lower incomes, those that would qualify for the DCC Home Purchase Loan (a DCC Mortgage for low/mid income earners). Others proposed full retention for social housing. The DCC manager emphasised that any change would mean the re-opening of the agreement and for some the re-opening of a time they would rather forget. He indicated that a significant change to the original agreement would not be achievable but he would do his utmost to achieve a small % increase in the social housing allocation.’
‘All of the 43 units were reasonably priced and offered on the market with a sales campaign that aimed at first time buyers. This afternoon’s North Central Area meeting was presented with the list of units sold and a request to approve their sale. Seeking assurances from DCC that the units would be sold to people as homes rather than as investments for rental purposes I met last week with DCC officials charged with the development. There were 3 companies named as purchasers of 5 units. However, it was indicated that these were bought for family members related to the company owners. I was therefore reasonably assured that they would be rented out but rather occupied by owner-related families’
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‘However, not everyone at the meeting could see the value in giving local people the chance to buy a home. Instead of seeking to know the details behind the company names  DCC was accused of selling the units to investment funds and berated for not retaining all the units as social housing. After a vote, respect of the original agreement and acknowledgement that sustainable tenure supports sustainable communities finally won out. However, no doubt we will debate the matter again at December’s main Council meeting’

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Airbnb and our housing crisis


This week An Bord Pleanála ruled that a particular residential unit in Temple Bar being rented out as an airbnb needed a change of planning use from residential to commercial. I very much welcome this ruling and seek now that regulations governing planning and tax aspects of airbnbs be issued by the Department of the Environment and Local Government.

There are over 3,000 Dublin properties available on Airbnb. Many of these are private individuals renting out a room in their homes to tourists visiting our city or renting out there home while away on holiday themselves. Others, however are operating as commercial businesses renting out entire apartments or houses on short-term lets. Such commercial operations cause difficulties for those living in the immediate area – occupants coming and going and perhaps not being vigilant or security conscious particularly those renting in an apartment complex.


These commercial operations have also had a negative impact on housing supply. There are over 750 families currently living in hotels while several hundred ‘entire homes’ are available on Airbnb for letting and potentially several hundred property owners using their  ‘home’ for commercial purposes with no adequate regulation in a time of unprecedented housing demand.

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No doubt this planning decision will take time to filter down and have a real impact on housing supply. It will also have an impact on hotel and other tourist accommodation in the city. Hotel occupancy and room rates are currently very high and there are very few planning applications for housing in train. This is in a context where the hospitality sector enjoys a special low 9% rate of VAT yet continues to refuse to engage with the wage setting mechanisms such as the JLC system to improve wages & conditions for hospitality workers – a debate for another day!


For today, and as a member of Dublin City Council Housing Strategic Policy Committee where my key focus is the increase of housing supply in Dublin, this decision is a small win for supply. I commend Dublin City Council for taking the case and encourage others to ‘report’ unauthorised commercial use of residential properties to the Planning Enforcement Section of DCC.

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Child care needs a Donagh O’Malley response

Close up of children girl with young female teacher are making something out of colored paper on table in primary school. Children craft lesson in primary school. Teacher learn children.

I’ve always believed if there is a will to do something then there is a way – we just have to find the courage to grasp the nettle. Child care is one such issue that needs to be radically flipped on its head and viewed from a visionary perspective.

For too long we’ve tinkered at the edges – Budget 2006 provided parents with a €1,000 childcare supplement which was thankfully scrapped in favour of one year free pre-school provision of three hours per day, five days a week over a 38-week year in 2009.  This provision has been very gradually increased but is still woefully inadequate both from a working parents’ perspective and from the childcare workers’ perspective given that it requires too many to be without work for up to 14 weeks during the summer. And here we go again, a new subvention for childcare in Budget 2017 but still no vision.

Three children brothers and their sister laying on the floor quietly entertaining themselves by drawing and coloring their favorite picture.

What we need to ask ourselves today is what type of childcare provision do we want for all children from the ages of 6/9 months until they begin primary school – set it out and achieve it, not in drips and drabs but in as short a timeframe as possible, just as Donagh O’Malley did when he announced free secondary education.

What I would advocate is provision for a national system of free universal childcare in the form of inclusive community childcare facilities. Except for its majority religious patronage, our primary school system is not an ineffective model upon which we could base our approach. In particular:

  • Qualified childcare workers would be employed by each child care provider/community childcare facility but paid by the state according to an appropriate salary scale
  • An appropriate per child capitation payment and resource grants would be paid to each provider/community childcare facility
  • Appropriate and integrated support services would be provided and funded  by the state
  • A range of facilities, including small from-home self-employed childcarers, would be certified to provide high quality, best-practice based childcare.
  • All facilities and childcare workers would be open to inspection/evaluation
  • The system would operate on a 48/50 week basis and include capacity for after school activities for primary school children
  • The system would acknowledge parents who wish to stay at home and look after their own children rather than use their children to outside the home childcare perhaps through the provison of early years toys/resources
  • The system would be flexible enough to accommodate fluctuating local demand

Of course there are challenges in taking such a leap of faith.

  • Funding for a start – given the lower childcare worker: child, this system has the potential to require a budget greater than that currently required by our primary school system, currently approximately €9bln. However, a ring-fenced % tax for childcare could be considered – paid for by everyone across their working lifetime
  • The availability of appropriately trained childcare workers to meet system needs
  • The reaction of some commercial providers to potential loss of current profits – however, a scheme under which the state could acquire premises/businesses could be set up to allow those not wishing to join the national system hand over their facilities.

However, there are also significant benefits.

  • With expediency and determination we could realise such a national universal childcare system within 3/4 years.
  • Children would be cared for and learn from fully qualified professional childcare workers using the best-practice  NCCA framework for early years learning, Aistear
  • Parents would be relieved of enormous financial burden of commercial child care costs generally concentrated within a 4 – 10 year period and, it could be argued, use their spare cash to contribute to the local domestic economy.
  • Parents, in particular mothers, would not be forced to choose between furthering their careers and childcare – this has a direct income tax benefit to the state
  • Plans for new schools in newly developed communities could incorporate plans for new community childcare facilities so as to ensure wrap-around care for all children
  • Childcare facilities would be central to communities, be inclusive of all families regardless of income and therefore support community sustainability and cohesion
The question however that arises is who will be our Donagh O’Malley?

Little cook. Children make pizza. Master class for children on cooking Italian pizza. Young children learn to cook a pizza. Kids preparing homemade pizza

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New obesity strategy doesn’t invest in people

Fat woman cartoon style different stages vector illustration. Fa

I’m not sure the Minister’s new obesity strategy will deliver the outcomes required or support those who need to improve their diet and lifestyle so as not to become overweight or obese. The reason I say this is that the strategy is not hands on enough, it’s not investing in people to help people who are over weight.

Many people remark at how ‘lucky’ I am not to ‘struggle’ with my weight. I am lucky in the sense that I was brought up on good home cooked meals, I learned about nutrition and I was taught by my mother how to cook for myself at an early age.

Delicious salmon fillet, rich in omega 3 oil

I’m also lucky because I understand (and accept) that weight is more or less a formula between food/calories in and food/calories burned off in the course of my day and that food/calories not burned off is stored therefore adds to my weight. I also understand that eating food is not just about weight but about feeding my body to keep it and me healthy and give me energy to go about my day’s work.  I understand that fresh food is better for me than processed foods.  Going to restaurants or having pizza on a Saturday night is a treat and I generally apply the theory of everything in moderation.

If I were the Minister I would have liaised with the Minister for Education and increased the time for Social Personal and Health Education in schools from it’s current 30 minutes per week to 60/90 minutes per week and I would have introduced and funded monthly cookery classes in all schools from Junior Infants up. I would have recruited and funded more nutritionists and dieticians. I would have allocated funding to local Family and Resource Centres for cookery courses that would include teaching basic nutrition. I would have allocated funding to local authorities for allotments. I would have allocated more funding to our community games, our local sports clubs and other local groups that work with communities to improve our understanding of food, nutrition and cooking. Basically I would have invested in people to help those who ‘struggle’ with their weight.

Little Boy Baking Cake With Mother, Breaking Egg.

Evidence on how effective such person-to-person support is can be found in the outcome of Northside Partnership’s Preparing for Life Programme. This programme supported mother’s to be from conception up until their child went to school and included a home visiting programme. The evaluation showed that, in addition to improved cognitive understanding and social behaviours  and a reduction in visits to hospitals, ‘the children whose parents received the intervention were also less likely to be overweight (23% compared to 41%)’

Mother Feeding Her Baby

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Populist Priory Hall demands ignore legal parameters

I don’t need to repeat the appalling homeless and social housing list statistics – they are to the fore of all Dublin City Council officials and councillors as we attempt to alleviate the suffering of those who do not have a safe, secure and appropriate place to call their home. Nor do I need to emphasise that housing supply is central to such alleviation. However, what needs recognition is that those who push populist solutions to our housing crisis often end up delaying and thwarting real possible solutions because they ignore legal parameters. Tonight’s debate on the Dublin City Council report on Priory Hall was one such example.

In 2013, after much negotiation the Department of the Environment and Local Government provided funds to DCC to manage the refurbishment of Priory Hall and a legal resolution agreement was drawn up to underpin the refurbishment. Part of this agreement was that the original balance of residential unit tenure i.e. social housing, owner-occupier and buy-to-let, be maintained. A report to this evening’s meeting sought to begin the process of unit allocation according to the 2013 agreed resolution.

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The populist ultra left would like us to believe that only they have a real social conscience and that the so-called establishment doesn’t care for the ordinary man and woman. They also tend to believe that laws can be disregarded in an instant to resolve issues as they see fit. This evening they wanted to do just this and completely ignore the resolution agreed for the refurbishment of Priory Hall when they sought to change the retention of the previous housing balance in favour of almost 100% social housing.

No-one argues against the need for more social housing units however this proposal failed to recognise that mixed tenure is acknowledged as a requirement for sustainable communities and that the previous Priory Hall agreement would have to be completely re-negotiated. This would cause an immense delay and no doubt expense and would probably not succeed. Such consequences were explained to the chamber by the CEO and the DCC Law Agent.

Instead of ignoring the resolution, myself and my Labour Party colleagues sought to make timely housing gains for those in need within the parameters of the agreement. Originally, 20% of the units in Priory Hall were allocated to social housing so we sought to amend the agreement to increase this by 10% to allow for 30% or about 57 units out of 187 – a reasonable ask that has a much greater  possibility of being achieved without significant delay or expense.

We also proposed that DCC would ‘retain sufficient units so as to provide an overall owner-occupier affordable housing level of 30% within the entire Priory Hall development to support those who meet the income criteria to be eligible for local authority house purchase loans‘. This proposal recognised and respected the number of owner-occupier units of the original development but argued for a targeted opportunity (38 units) for those on lower incomes to buy units designated for owner-occupiers. Again, a workable ask within the resolution parameters that will make a real difference for those lower earners (single income of under €50,000 or a joint income of no greater than €75,000).

This practicable, reasonable and workable approach won’t make the headlines but it will make a real difference to many families seeking a more secure and affordable home. It also recognises that as public representatives we have a responsibility to support the wide variety of housing requirements and to find real solutions, not populist unachievable ones, for those who need our support.




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The truth about Labour’s motion that some don’t want to hear

Yesterday, May 31st, the Labour Party launched a very substantial motion on workers’ rights under Private Members Business. This motion calls on the government ‘to prepare and introduce a legislative package that will protect and enhance workers’ rights by:

  • ending the abuse of ‘if and when’ contracts;
  • combatting bogus self-employment;
  • ensuring freelance workers have the right to collectively bargain;
  • extending the Transfer of Undertakings Regulations (TUPE) to workers in services such as catering and security;
  • protecting workers in ‘informal’ insolvencies and collective redundancies;
  • providing statutory redress for the victims of workplace bullying;
  • promoting employment standards and the Living Wage in public procurement; and
  • preventing unilateral reductions in pay

All the above reflect historic core Labour Party work and, more recently, priorities outlined in its 2016 General Election Manifesto. In particular, the call for the ending of ‘if and when’ contracts, the right to collectively bargaining for freelance workers, a Living Wage and the protection of workers in ‘informal’ insolvencies and collective redundancies all build on work achieved by Senators Ged Nash and Ivanna Bacik during the last government.

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However, the genuine and continuous striving by Labour to enhance workers’ rights has been called into question. It was a comment below on my own Facebook by someone, whose political ideology I wouldn’t completely share but whose activism and advocacy for social justice and workers’ right I hugely respect that moved me to write this blog. Sadly he’s not the only one who holds this view as social media responses over the last 48 hrs show. Its easy to script the sanctimonious underpinnings, the deliberate pauses, the overplayed cynicism and the assertions similar to the comment I received from those politicians who, unlike Labour, are more conscious of their own image than of actually doing something about the issues they supposedly believe in.

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You only have to look at the current Programme for Government to see the non-importance of workers’ rights – two pages on turf cutting and a few lines on workers as Ged Nash pointed out. If you want further evidence have a look at how many Fine Gael TDs signed the Irish Congress of Trade Unions Charter for Fair Conditions at work or ask how many of them even attended Labour’s Living Wage  Conference or indeed check out all previous Fine Gael election manifestos. These TDs are the same ones that the Labour Party coalesced with in the last government and yet managed to progress many worker-centred issues, most notably the introduction of collective bargaining legislation in the face of not just Fine Gael’s ideology but global anti-trade unionism.

The thing is, if you can step back and take an objective view, it is evident that it is not Labour that is cynical or exploitative. Rather it is Labour that seeks to consistently exploit, on behalf of workers, every avenue that will lead to even the smallest gain towards better fairer terms, conditions and protections for them. If you look you’ll see that Labour demonstrated that in the previous government and is now pro-actively leading the way for workers in this era of new politics and therefore this motion, and indeed the Labour Party, should be supported for what it is what it can achieve for workers in our country .

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What its critics need to realise that, while they were concentrating on protesting and point scoring, the Labour Party actually got out there and did something about the issue


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DCC must take lead in site development


At yesterday’s  North Central Area Meeting (Monday 16th May) I proposed a motion calling on DCC to carry out a transport assessment and a social infrastructure audit for the Oscar Traynor Rd. site. This 17 hectare site is part of Dublin City Council’s Vacant Land Initiative.  It is the city’s biggest development at present with 655 housing units and a retail centre planned for the site. The development of the site needs to informed and appropriately managed so as to ensure we have both a sustainable development and potentially negative impacts for the local communities surrounding the site are mitigated against.

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Housing in the area is absolutely needed, there is no question about that. However,  Dublin City Council need to take and lead and prepare the site so as to ensure the end result is a sustainable community with appropriate amenities, facilities and proper traffic management. At present such preparation is not forthcoming. Indeed, there seems to be a significant reluctance on the part of DCC to conduct the appropriate preparation. I am calling for a transport assessment and a social infrastructure audit to be carried out to support good planning –  making key preparations simply cannot be left to those who win the contract to develop the land.

Transport Assessment

When you look at the current traffic issues in the immediate you’ll see that the Oscar Traynor Rd. and the Dundaniel Rd. are highly congested at peak hours. If traffic from the 655 units planned for the site are added to this the roads surrounding the area will be at a stand still. This will have a negative knock on effect on those commuting into the city from the M1, residents in Santry Court, Aulden Grange, Woodlawn, Larch Hill, Dundaniel Rd and the Castletimon estate. A transport assessment will identify such issues and will be able to make recommendations to mitigate against them.

Social Infrastructure Audit

There are 3 primary schools in the immediate area, including Gaelscoil Cholmcille adjacent to the site which is currently seeking to expand. An obvious question to ask is whether there be enough places for additional children coming into the area? Another vital requirement is childcare facilities – there are none in the immediate vicinity. The master plan has provision for a large passive park. However, the area needs an active well thought out park with designated football pitches, basketball court, a pavilion area for residents to be active and for local schools and clubs to use. These basic needs can only be captured through a social infrastructure audit – once identified deficits can be planned for.

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We cannot just wait to see what the developers come up with in their plans – DCC is the only authority that can take the lead so as to ensure the new community that will be developed on the site will fully integrate with and support the current local communities around the site.


Text of motion – passed Monday 16th, North Central Area Committee

Motion in the name of Cllr Alison Gilliland

That Dublin City Council take full responsibility for funding, conducting and disseminating a 1) Transport Assessment and 2) Social Infrastructure Audit on the  planned development of 655 units on the vacant lands on the Oscar Traynor Rd. That

a) these assessment /audit be initiated as soon as possible 

b) this responsibility is detailed in any tender briefs/documentation with regard to the lands.

c) DCC will use the resulting reports for each assessment /audit to inform the facility, amenity, public services, traffic and transport requirements for the development of the site so as to enable a sustainable, fully serviced urban community. 

d) plans be drawn up by DCC, where appropriate in conjunction with any developer that may win the tender, to address any deficits identified in each assessment/audit

e) these plans operate in tandem with progress on the development so as to realise a sustainable, fully serviced urban community, to minimise disruption and knock on negative impacts to the local communities surrounding the vacant lands development. 

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