Dáil Éireann - Volume 616 - 08 March, 2006

Requests to move Adjournment of Dáil under Standing Order 31.

  An Ceann Comhairle: Before coming to the Order of Business, I propose to deal with a number of notices under Standing Order 31.

  Ms Cooper-Flynn: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: the delay in securing the roll-out of BreastCheck screening services to the west, the concern that the service will not be [473] available until the end of 2007, the significant anxiety this is causing to 58,000 women in the planned catchment area, and now that Galway County Council has granted planning permission, the need to shorten the scheduled timeframe for the delivery of this service.

  Aengus Ó Snodaigh: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: the failure of the Government to address the ongoing inequalities experienced by women in this State, including inequalities of earning, representation and participation in decision-making structures as evidenced by this week’s EUROSTAT report and figures, published by the Central Statistics Office at the end of last year, which found that approximately 30% of members of State boards and less than 20% of members of regional and local authorities are women, and that women’s income in this State was just two thirds of that of men.

  Dr. Cowley: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: the disgraceful situation where a 77 year old man who is seriously ill in Mayo General Hospital, Castlebar, has been waiting for the past seven days to be transferred to a bed in the consultant haematology unit of University College Hospital Galway for urgent investigation and treatment of his condition. Even though the consultant in Mayo and the consultant haematologist in Galway are both of the opinion that he needs to be transferred urgently to Galway, they are unable to do so owing to the failure of the Government and the Health Service Executive to provide a hospital bed for him.

  Mr. Gogarty: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: the need for the Government, and the Tánaiste as head representative today, to take cognisance finally of the risk to tens of thousands of households throughout the country from gas pipes that have not been installed in line with Irish standard IS813 2002, resulting in ongoing user safety notices being issued citing non-conformance with regulations due, for example, the pipes not being protected from corrosion against concrete. This has created a risk whereby the pipe will eventually corrode, leading to gas leaks and, in some cases, potentially fatal explosions. This is an issue I raised on several occasions, which the Government has ignored and needs to deal with today before someone is killed.

  Mr. Connolly: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: recognising the many barriers to employment faced by people with disabilities, the challenges and disincentives faced in entering or maintaining their place in the workforce, the fact that unemployment rates for the [474] disabled are more than twice that for able-bodied persons and the urgent need for resources to be made available for training and upskilling of disabled persons to enable them to contribute on a positive level to society, the need for the Government to make available to prospective employers of disabled persons a range of tax incentives such as disability access credits, workplace modification grants and apprentice wage supports to encourage and provide greater incentives for the employment of disabled persons.

  Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to debate the following urgent matter: the abject failure of the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children’s so-called ten point plan for accident and emergency services given the record number of 455 people on trolleys in accident and emergency units in hospitals yesterday; and the need for the Government to fulfil its commitment to provide the additional acute hospital beds required, as well as long-term care facilities and the development of improved primary care throughout the State, the absence of which is contributing to the accident and emergency crisis.

  Mr. Healy: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to raise a specific matter of local and national importance requiring urgent consideration, namely, the need for the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government to introduce a house purchase scheme for tenants of voluntary housing associations similar to the tenant purchase scheme operated by local authorities thereby giving these tenants equal rights with local authority tenants and giving them an opportunity to be home owners in accordance with the legitimate wish and expectation of Irish people generally and to ask the Minister to make a statement on the matter.

  Mr. Crowe: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 31 to discuss the following urgent matter, namely, that the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children address the continuing crisis in Tallaght hospital’s accident and emergency department, the most overcrowded in the State, where on Monday night a patient with a serious heart complaint, who was identified and marked urgent, waited for more than ten and a half hours and left the hospital in an extremely distressed and unstable condition after no prospect of getting even a trolley bed whereby staff could monitor his deteriorating condition.

  An Ceann Comhairle: Having considered the matters raised, they are not in order under Standing Order 31.

[475]   Mr. Gogarty: Given the seriousness of the issue I raised, I ask the Ceann Comhairle to use his discretion in this instance.

  An Ceann Comhairle: The Chair considered the issues carefully and has ruled on the matter.

  Mr. Gogarty: I do not know if the Ceann Comhairle heard the Adjournment Debate last Thursday——

  An Ceann Comhairle: We are not having a debate on it now.

  Mr. Gogarty: ——but the answer I got from the Minister was pathetic.

  An Ceann Comhairle: If the Deputy is not happy with the Chair’s ruling, he is welcome to go to the office of the Ceann Comhairle and I will discuss it with him.

  Mr. Gogarty: I refer to corrosive gas pipes which will lead to a leak and an explosion. There is no other mechanism by which I can raise the matter.

  An Ceann Comhairle: It is not appropriate to raise the matter in this fashion.

  Mr. Gogarty: I am sorry, but the Tánaiste is here and she is the representative of the Government.

  An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy knows there are other ways in which to raise the matter in the House.

  Mr. Gogarty: I am sorry, I ask the Ceann Comhairle to take this matter today.

  An Ceann Comhairle: I ask Deputy Gogarty to resume his seat.

  Mr. Gogarty: I will not, this is a point of principle.

  An Ceann Comhairle: I would not speak to the Chair in that fashion if I was the Deputy.

  Mr. Gogarty: Thousands of gas leaks over the years may lead to a situation where they will cause an explosion.

  An Ceann Comhairle: I ask Deputy Gogarty to resume his seat.

  Mr. Gogarty: This issue must be dealt with today.

  An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy cannot raise the matter. If he is not happy with the ruling of the Chair——

[476]   Mr. Gogarty: I am not happy with the ruling of the Chair.

  An Ceann Comhairle: ——I will be glad to discuss it with him in the office of the Ceann Comhairle.

  Mr. Gogarty: I am sorry but this matter must be dealt with because I have raised it twice on the Adjournment Debate and on a number of occasions under Standing Order 31.

  An Ceann Comhairle: It appears to the Chair that Deputy Gogarty wishes to leave the House.

  Mr. Gogarty: I do not wish to leave the House.

  An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy will leave the House for being disorderly.

  Mr. Gogarty: It is not an issue of order; it is one of public safety.

  An Ceann Comhairle: It has nothing to do with the issue, which has been dealt with.

Deputy Gogarty withdrew from the Chamber.