morningfocus's blog

MORNING FOCUS MONDAY 3RD NOVEMBER

MORNING FOCUS MONDAY 3RD NOVEMBER

Almost 2,500 people took part in anti water charges protests in Clare this weekend. Enda Kenny, Not another Penny and Clare says no, Hear the Banner Roar were just some of the chants to be heard as the marchers battled pouring rain to have their voices heard.In Ennis 1,200 people took to the streets with the same amount in Shannon and 50 in Westbury. There was a festive atmosphere in Ennis where a Bluegrass band led the March around the town.  Breda McManus and Kathleen Austin who are members of the Clare says #no campaign joined John to speak about the weekends events.

Senator Martin Conway spoke to John about the issue of cyber bullying.Senator Conway was critised on social media recently following an appearance on the Vincent Brown Show where he said water doesn’t fall from the sky, on-online forums criticism for Senator Conway veered into the personal with some mocking his vision impairment. Martin received widespread praise last week from confronting the issue again on the Vincent Brown Show highlighting the issue of on-line bullying.

MORNING FOCUS FRIDAY 31ST OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS FRIDAY  31ST OCTOBER

New civil service plan to make it easier to sack poorly performing workersThe government has unveiled a reform of the civil service that will include measures that make it easier to sack poorly performing workers.The three-year plan will manage the service as a unified entity, rather than the current practice of sixteen separate government departments. In the first 200 days, a new accountability board will be established chaired by the Taoiseach, a performance review for Secretaries-General will take place and recruitment will take place for the first time since before the economic crisis. Bonus or performance related pay arrangements are ruled out for the 36,000 staff, as is a recommendation for the appointment of a head of the civil service Derek Mullen , Deputy General Secretary. CPSU spoke with John ahead of the meeting

University Maternity Hospital, Limerick will hold their Annual Remembrance service on Sunday 2nd November 2014 at 3pm in the Church of the Holy Rosary, Ennis Road, Limerick. Marie Hunt , Bereavement Counselling Midwife, University of Limerick Hospital  joined  John to discuss the importance and potency of the event Marie would like to bring some context to the event and talk about the importance of acknowledging pregnancy loss for parents and families regardless of gestation and how an event like the remembrance service can help families in their grief. 

MORNING FOCUS THURSDAY 30TH OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS THURSDAY 30TH OCTOBER

ALONE, the charity that supports older people in need, has condemned the fifteen week waiting lists currently facing Fair Deal Scheme applicants. ALONE believe that nursing homes are not always the answer, and strive to keep older people living within the community by providing suitable accommodation, home supports and social outlets. ALONE’s model of supportive housing in the community makes sense to the individual, community and the economy. Director of Nursing  St. Terea's Nursing home Kilrush Yvonne Moroney and Sean Moynihan Chief Executive Officer of ALONE spoke with john about the issue.

In the run up to Halloween, Clare County Council is urging members of the public not to supply any waste material to persons who do not hold a valid waste collection permit. Clare County Fire and Rescue Service says that substantial costs are incurred each Halloween in responding to bonfire-related incidents, as well as cleaning up after bonfires have taken place. In 2013, the Fire Service attended 7 bonfires at a cost of €8,800. Ger Fallon,  Clare County Assistant Chief Fire Officer, detailed the dangerous side of Halloween with John.

MORNING FOCUS WEDNESDAY 29TH OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS WEDNESDAY  29TH OCTOBER

30% of private wells in Ireland are contaminated by E.coli. The Central Statistics Office (CSO) census figures indicate that there are approximately 170,000 wells in Ireland. Therefore 50,000 private wells may be contaminated. According to the Health Service Executive (HSE), Ireland has the highest rate of VTEC (Veritoxigenic E.Coli) in Europe. VTEC is a toxin producing form of E.coli and is a lot more serious than an ordinary tummy bug. Yvonne Moroney ,Director of Nursing ,St. Terea's Nursing home Kilrush and Michael Duffy Consultant Civil Engineer based in  Kilfenora  spoke to John about the issue.

Francis Smith a Ballyvaughan Native  got in touch with us here on Morning focus  RE NPPR  feeFrancis lives in Darby in the UK but has a holiday home in Mullagh. She sent us a copy of a letter which she sent to the county council detailing her dissatisfaction with  the council and payment of the NPPR charge. Francis has been living in Darby in the UK since the 60’s. She has a holiday home in Mullagh since 2007. Francis also has issues with the water charges, she has had a water meter in place for the past 17 months and said she won’t be paying a fixed charge. Francis outlined her issues to John.

MORNING FOCUS TUESDAY 28TH OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS TUESDAY  28TH OCTOBER

IFA President Eddie Downey has called a countrywide 24-hour beef price protest by farmers outside all meat factories from 3pm next Monday 27th October until Tuesday afternoon. He said farmer anger with the meat factories has boiled over with the massive €350 per head cattle price gap now opened up with our main export market in the UK. Andrew joined John from the protest in Nenagh to discuss the main issues concerning his organisation.

MORNING FOCUS FRIDAY 24TH OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS FRIDAY  24TH OCTOBER

Trócaire Executive Director Éamon Meehan, from Kilmaley in Co. Clare, is in Sierra Leone this week as part of the organisation's response to the Ebola outbreak that has so far claimed over 4,500 lives. Éamonn spoke to Marian from Sierra Leon

Organ donner and Westbury native Johnny Paradise joined Marian this morning.Johnny  was inspired  to donate one of his kidneys after watching an RTE documentary about organ donation featuring  GAA pundit Joe Brolly. The recipient is a married man with three children who was unbale to work for the last number of years. Johnny is hoping he will help raise awareness about the importance of organ donation.

MORNING FOCUS THURSDAY 23RD OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS THURSDAY 23RD OCTOBER

The Action group met with Minister of State Simon Harris yesterday to discuss the issue of flood defence in Quilty. The area was particularly badly hit during in last year’s storms and the community is looking for increased defences to put in place to protect against further storms. Michael Neenan Chairman - Clohaninchy Action Group Quilty and John Crowe , Cathaoirleach Clare County Council joined Marian to discuss how the meeting went.

Householders are putting their lives at risk by tampering with utility meters.In the past 18 months almost 1,300 people attempted to alter their gas meters in a desperate bid to reduce household costs.According to Bord Gáis Networks, 512 people have tampered with their meter so far this year. The overall figure for last year was 740, based on the number of reports of tampering received by the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER). Eoin Wilson, Head of Safety at Bord  Gais Networks spoke to Marian about he issue.

MORNING FOCUS WEDNESDAY 22ND OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS TUESDAY 23RD OCTOBER

An Post have confirmed that they will not be extending the contract for the Cratloe post office past March 2015. There had been a campaign in place to save the facility but this hasn’t prevented the post-office taking the decision to close the outlet. Closure of rural post offices have been a big talking point in recent years with many feeling the closure of the outlets is the final nail in the coffin for rural living. Tom O’Callaghan Clare Postmaster Rep- Kildysart native and Cllr PJ Ryan (Ind) spoke to Marian about the issue.

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has this afternoon insisted he did not discuss Maíria Cahill’s allegations of rape by an IRA member with her and was “personally horrified” at remarks she attributed to him in a recent television programme. The grandniece of leading IRA figure Joe Cahill, Ms Cahill told BBC’s Spotlight she had to face her alleged assailant in a republican-style court and had a number of meetings with Mr Adams about her allegations. Cllr Mike Mckee  Sinn Feins sole representative on Clare County council spoke to Marian about the on-going controversy.

MORNING FOCUS TUESDAY 21ST OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS TUESDAY 21ST OCTOBER

UP to 1000 people protested at the weekend over implementation of water meter charges. This comes on the back of last weekends march in Dublin where over 50000 protesters from around the country voiced their disapproval about the new charges. We had reaction from the Ennis march yesterday.Following on from this today  Fianna Fails Timmy Dooley and Fine Daels Pat Breen debated the issue with Marian.

Catholic gay rights groups have described the rejection by bishops of proposals for wider acceptance of gay people as "very disappointing".At the end of a two week synod in Rome, the Vatican failed to get the required two-thirds majority to back its initial draft document.After the initial draft was released on Monday, conservative bishops vowed to change the language on gays. Marian was joined by Fr Bernard Lynch Fr Lynch is an Ennis native who  was born the eldest of six in 1947, joined the Society of African Missions in 1965 and was ordained in 1971. He is best known for his work with Aids victims in New York and for coming out as a gay priest. He was married to husband Billy Desmond in 1998 by a Cistercian priest in London and had a civil ceremony in 2007 .

MORNING FOCUS MONDAY 20TH OCTOBER

MORNING FOCUS MONDAY 20TH OCTOBER

The organisers of a protest in Ennis, which saw nearly 1,000 people express their opposition to Irish Water, have called on the government to heed their calls.Hundreds marched through the town centre on Saturday afternoon, demanding a reversal of water charges, while many said they simply wouldn't pay.Niamh O'Brien of Clare says no to water charges joined Marian to talk about the weekends events.

The National Housing Construction Index compiled and issued by Link2Plans shows Clare is continuing to experience a recovery in the residential construction sector with the number of project commencements and planning applications both increasing in the first eight months of 2014. When compared to the same period in 2013, project commencements in Clare are up +30%, while the number of new planning applications are up +19%.. Tom Parlon. Director General of  the construction industry federation spoke to Marian about the improvements in the sector.