Mary McCauley

 Inishowen, Fianna Fáil

Mary McCauleyThe National Women’s Collective – Donegal Women’s Network sent an ‘Open Invitation’ to all 2014 local election candidates to respond to questions that have been identified as areas of concern by voters in Donegal.

Each candidate was  invited to respond and to pledge to undertake specific actions if they are successful and elected onto Donegal County Council.

This we believe will give the electorate an insight into each candidate as well as giving the candidates an open forum which could be helpful in securing votes.

Below are the questions with the candidates response.

YOUR CANDIDATE  MARY MCCAULEY
QUESTIONS:  AS A PUBLIC REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE FOR DONEGAL WHAT SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE DO YOU HAVE TO OFFER?  RESPONSES: “An active member of the community, I was a founder member of Greencastle Community Childcare Ltd, a member of the parents association of primary school and I am now active in the Moville Community College Phase II Project. I am also a director of North East Inishowen Tourism Development Company. Previously I worked in community development in Northern Ireland, an integral part of which was the regeneration of Derry City. I am an organised person and an effective communicator which is essential as a working mother of five teenage children”.
IF ELECTED WILL YOU WORK TOWARDS UPHOLDING AND PROMOTING THE ETHOS OF SOCIAL INCLUSION, EQUALITY AND HUMAN RIGHTS? YES
CHILDCARE
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: “I believe in proper regulation within the childcare sector. Having been a founder member of Greencastle Community Childcare Ltd, I am acutely aware of the challenges facing childcare providers and costs associated with setup, running costs and compliance with regulation. I will work with key stakeholder particularly Donegal Childcare and advocate on their behalf”.
CARERS
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: “Having cared for my mother at home in later life I am fully aware of the challenges facing carers. I will lobby and work with stakeholders, representatives and government to ensure that services are directed towards those most in need of them and they are delivered at a level that makes a meaningful difference for the most vulnerable in our society”.
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? “I understand that funding streams everywhere are under pressure, however, I will seek to maximise funding for Donegal Women’s Domestic Violence Service. I will not make promises that I may not be able to keep but I can fully commit to doing my best to support the service. However, quite often one-off grants become available and having experience of the funding sector, I will assist the service to identify possible alternative sources of funding”.
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: “I am happy to engage in and participate in discussions about the forthcoming referendum on same sex marriage”.
TRAVELLERS
QUESTION WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ENSURE FULL IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL TRAVELLER ACCOMMODATION 2014-2018 PLAN? RESPONSE: “If elected I will work to ensure that the plan is implemented by monitoring progress keenly and bringing it to the fore as required”.
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? “My experience of female participation has been a positive one. My party has successively chosen female candidates to run in the Foyle area the last three elections with successful outcomes. Our party is running four candidates in the Inishowen area, 50% of whom are women”.
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? “I will encourage any measure that supports greater female participation in politics and/or makes it easier for people with families to become public representatives and achieve a work-life balance. I want to see the face of politics in Ireland change to a more balanced reflection of society with a more equal balance of representation between male and females”.
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.wordpress.com  
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