Unprecedented Meltdown in the Health Service

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] I know that I am beginning to sound like a broken record and that the attention of many in the Oireachtas has been distracted by other events which will take place in the first quarter of 2016. However, we cannot lose sight of the fact that there … Continue reading

We Need to Urgently Address the Issue of Mandatory Retirement

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] I rise to raise again today an issue I have raised previously, and on which Senator White has proposed legislation, namely, mandatory retirement in the health service. I would like to bring to the attention of my colleagues that a critical person in a specialty in Ireland … Continue reading

Pension Reform and Mandatory Retirement

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] I propose an amendment to the Order of Business seeking the attendance of the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection in the House today to outline a timeline on the critical issue of pension reform in light of the data which came out today from the Pensions … Continue reading

Social Welfare and Pensions Bill

[Speaking in the Seanad during Second Stage of the Social Welfare and Pensions Bill 2013] I welcome the Aire to the House. What could be a more difficult job to be given than that of Minister for Social Protection and Minister for Health during a recession and at a time when the demands for the … Continue reading

Social Welfare Bill

(Committee Stage in the Seanad) I will not get involved in any recrimination, name calling or umbrage. I know the Minister is a caring person. I also know she is not an unthoughtful person. In the big spectrum of contemporary politicians she would be from a tradition that puts some thought and – to use … Continue reading

Abolishing mandatory retirement

Speaking on the Employment Equality (Amendment)(No. 2) Bill ……….. I have great pleasure in seconding this visionary proposal by Senator White. I hope it will be agreed to by the House and, if not, that it will spark a far-reaching debate. I refer to members of the Cabinet who will be in their 65th year … Continue reading

Time to end mandatory retirement

There has been considerable discussion .. over the past several days about the disclosure that various senior staff in the public service had been re-hired following their retirements. Much of the discussion is focused on the appropriateness of this practice, the potential waste, and there has been a focus on the degree of compensation for … Continue reading

Mandatory Retirement

The reality is we need to have a fundamental rethink of how we, as a society, handle the ageing process. It is a given there is a large body of very serious thought about the way we handle birth and that we have to stop abnormalising birth. Although I must admit I have some reservations … Continue reading

End mandatory retirement and no Oireachtas pension until 65

As the Government is planning the final stages of the budget I again ask it, through the Leader, to consider something which was suggested by me in this House on several occasions, which I believe would save a great deal of money for the health service — my colleague, Senator White, feels strongly about it … Continue reading

Addressing Dr. Mary Robinson

As somebody who was a member of the Diaspora when she was President, I experienced a surge of pride in the Irish community when somebody who had been as outward looking, internationalist and mould breaking in the context of Irish politics had been elected to the position. I am fascinated and impressed by Dr. Robinson’s … Continue reading