The National Women’s Collective – Donegal Women’s Network sent an ‘Open Invitation’ to all Donegal Councillors to respond to questions that have been identified as areas of concern of people in Donegal.
Each councillor was invited to respond and to pledge to undertake specific actions during their term within Donegal County Council.
Below are the questions with the councillor’s response.
|YOUR CANDIDATE FRANK MCBREARTY|
|QUESTIONS: AS A PUBLIC REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE FOR DONEGAL WHAT SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE DO YOU HAVE TO OFFER?||RESPONSES: I have been a public representative for five years now. In 2011/2012 I was Chairperson of the Stranorlar Electoral Area and in 2012/2013 I had the great honour of being Mayor of the county. In my year as Mayor I promoted positive mental health by holding a National conference called SAM (sport aiding mental health) and was chairperson of the CPG. I have represented the people of Donegal on the following committees; SPC for Planning, SPC for water and environment, Donegal Sports Partnership, The HSE western forum, LTACC, JPC and I am also a member of the boards of management at Deele College and Finn Valley college.|
|IF ELECTED WILL YOU WORK TOWARDS UPHOLDING AND PROMOTING THE ETHOS OF SOCIAL INCLUSION, EQUALITY AND HUMAN RIGHTS?||YES|
|QUESTION: THE COST OF CHILDCARE IN DONEGAL HAS RECENTLY BEEN PROVED TO ACT AS A BARRIER TO LOW INCOME WORKING FAMILIES TO EITHER REMAIN IN OR TAKE UP EMPLOYMENT. WITH AN AVERAGE COST FOR 2 CHILDREN IN FULL TIME DAY CARE EQUATING TO €16,500 PER YEAR AFTER TAX – WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ADDRESS THIS SITUATION AT POLICY LEVEL IN DONEGAL?||RESPONSE: As a public representative I will fight to ensure that the rights of families are protected and as this is a national issue that affects families locally, I will put pressure on Government parties to bring about the necessary changes that will help the most vulnerable in society.|
|QUESTION: IN LIGHT OF THE MANY CUTS TO SERVICES I.E. HOME HELPS, SPECIAL NEEDS ASSISTANTS AND PERSONAL ASSISTANTS, WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ADDRESS THIS SITUATION AT A POLICY LEVEL IN DONEGAL?||RESPONSE: The current Government has gone back on its promise to protect services. We as public representatives, who are given a mandate to represent the people after the local elections, must ensure that this Government is held accountable for their unjust cuts. These cuts must be reversed.|
|DOMESTIC ABUSE + VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN|
|QUESTIONS: HAVE YOU OR WILL YOU SIGN UP TO THE MAN-UP CAMPAIGN?||RESPONSES: YES|
|WILL YOU UNDERTAKE A HALF DAY WORKSHOP IN 2014 ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE?||YES|
|DONEGAL WOMEN’S DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SERVICE HAS RECENTLY EXPANDED THE NUMBER OF ACCOMMODATION UNITS IT SUPPLIES YET THERE HAS BEEN NO FURTHER INCREASE IN FUNDING FROM DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL. HOW WILL YOU ADDRESS THIS?||Funding is limited in Donegal County Council and we should be getting more money from Government. I have supported the Donegal Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis centre during my 5 years on the council and if elected I will continue to support them. I will support the Donegal Women’s Violence Service in any way I can and if funding is made available I will certainly support them.|
|LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL AND TRANSGENDER (LGBT)|
|QUESTION: IN THE UPCOMING REFERENDUM ON SAME SEX MARRIAGE, WHAT ACTIONS WILL YOU TAKE TO ENSURE A BALANCED DEBATE IN DONEGAL?||RESPONSE: A threat to Justice anywhere in Ireland is a threat to justice everywhere in Ireland. I will ensure that Donegal County Council plays its part in any debate on this issue and that fairness is adhered to at all times. We must ensure that equality is protected and that the rights of all Irish citizens are upheld.|
|QUESTION: WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ENSURE FULL IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL TRAVELLER ACCOMMODATION 2014-2018 PLAN?||RESPONSE: I am currently a member LATCC and I will support the implementation of the plan.|
|WOMEN’S POLITICAL REPRESENTATION|
|QUESTIONS: DO YOU SUPPORT THE 5050 CAMPAIGN TO SECURE EQUAL POLITICAL PARTICIPATION IN IRELAND?||RESPONSES: YES|
|IF NO PLEASE EXPLAIN WHY.||NA|
|WHAT ACTIONS WILL YOU TAKE WITHIN YOUR PARTY OR AS AN INDEPENDENT TO ENCOURAGE AND SUPPORT AT LEAST 30% FEMALE PARTICIPATION IN THE NEXT GENERAL ELECTION?||I have supported this over the past 5 years and I will continue to do so if re-elected.|
|EQUALITY IN DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL|
|QUESTIONS: DO YOU AGREE THAT DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL SHOULD BE MORE FAMILY FRIENDLY FOR ITS ELECTED COUNCILLORS?||RESPONSES: YES|
|WHAT ACTIONS WILL YOU TAKE TO ENSURE THIS CHANGE?||Unfortunately it is not a nine to five job and sometimes imposes on your family life. Most meetings occur during the day and at different venues so I don’t see any benefit of having childcare provisions as it would be of no use to some elected members. There are also a lot of public meetings in the evenings and you are expected to attend. However I would support any viable suggestion that would be put before the council to make it more family friendly.|
|DO YOU AGREE GENDER EQUALITY IS A FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE UNDERPINNING THE CONCEPT OF SOCIAL JUSTICE, AND HUMAN AND CIVIL RIGHTS IN IRELAND?||YES|
|Part of the “BE INFORMED… about your 2014 Local Election Candidates” by NCCWN-Donegal Women’s Network www.donegalwomensnetwork.com|