THIS is always a busy time of year in Dail Eireann and I have been meaning to update the site long before now, so apologies for not doing it sooner.
A lot of different things have been happening since I last updated, we have had the Budget estimates released by the Government recently where A&E charges were doubled to €65 a visit. The GP-only cards do not cover A&E visits so this is very disheartening news on the health front indeed.
People on waiting lists and enduring terrible conditions in overcrowded Accident and Emergency Units will also find it difficult to believe that the Tanaiste actually failed to spend more than €56m that was available to her this year.
Labour Youth had another successful conference in Galway and I spoke along with the Party Leader, Deputy Pat Rabbitte and Deputy Michael D Higgins. Check out this link on the Labour Youth website.
I spoke to the delegates about mental health and awareness in Ireland and the pitiful resources given to this the Cinderella of Irish health services. Labour is the only party to have a specific policy on mental health, you can read more here.
George Bernard Shaw once said that youth is wasted on the young and having spent time at the conference of Labour Youth over the years I have found the complete opposite to be true!
I was pleased to meet residents of Greystones last week when concerns were raised about proposals for the harbour. This is one of the planning issues that I am keeping a close eye on and will be keeping in contact with the local residents this issue.
Finally the Labour Party will be having its Wicklow convention on December 4 and we are hoping to see all our Labour members out in force.