raTHCoole & SaGGarT
HorSe Welfare CriSiS
25TH MARCH 2013 P.O. BOx 3430, TALLAGHT, DuBLIn 24 TEL: 451 3822 email: email@example.com web: www.newsgroup.ie
People Before Profit Councillor Gino Kenny has called on all parties to resolve the situation with abandoned horses in Clonburris after seven horses were found dead in the last week. All of the horses that were found were on privately owned land which is commonly known as ‘Clonburris Little’. The lands have been used over the past twenty years to graze horses. Councillor Kenny who is working closely with the newly formed Clondalkin Equine Club said," The situation at
this present time is completely unacceptable and unsustainable in terms of the welfare of the horses.There are horses there that have to fend for themselves with very little food, water and practicably no shelter. This has led to these poor horses either starving to death or been so desperate to escape that they have died in trying to do so. In one incident on St Patrick's Day Dublin Fire Brigade were called to help a stranded pregnant mare which was stuck in a ditch.
Seven HorSeS Die in ClonburriS
Local people and myself helped to free the animal, but unfortunately the animal later died that night. Local people and horse owners done all they could to save the animal. It is truly a pitiful situation for the animals. This problem stems from the lack of equine education and irresponsible horse owners abandoning their horses in the fields and not taking care for them. This in turn gives all responsible horse owners a bad name in Clondalkin".
"The short term solution is to access the health of the remaining horses that are in the fields . The long term solution is that all parties come up with an equine management plan for owners in horse Clondalkin and work with the newly formed Clondalkin Equine Club. Otherwise we will facing the same situation next year.
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The vast majority of horse owners in Clondalkin are sickened in what's going on in Clonburris but also feel passionately that a
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SurveyorS reminD HomeoWnerS THaT revenue eSTimaTeS are noT properTy valuaTionS Your FREE Local Newspaper
The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland has reminded homeowners that the tax liability figure contained within the Local Property Tax return being issued by Revenue to over 1.6m
households does not constitute a valuation of their property. The SCSI said that it was important that homeowners were aware of this and highlighted the requirement on
homeowners to conduct their own self-assessment of their property value using various online sources and comparables. O’Connell, Roland President of the SCSI said; “In order to
provide some guidance to homeowners, Revenue has provided an estimate of the average band that properties in a particular area could fall into. However, homeowners
should be made aware of the fact that the figure contained within the return they receive from Revenue is simply an estimation and in no constitutes a way valuation of their property. If
homeowners simply pay the estimated figure provided by Revenue they are at risk of under-or over valuing their property. To avoid confusion and potential repercussions, our advice to
solution has to be found in addressing the issue. South Dublin County Council's policy of impounding simply horses is failing in Clondalkin. I'm hoping that out of this desperate situation we can find a solution. It
will take some lateral thinking on the part of all civic bodies to address the issue. This has to be in conjunction with horse owners to not let this horrendous catalogue of events happen again" Kenny concluded.
homeowners is to take the necessary steps to arrive at a value that they believe their property is worth using the many tools and calculators available online” O’Connell concluded.
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One of the seven horses which died in Clonburris
In response to the current situation in Clonburris in regards to dead horses and general equine health in Clondalkin the Irish Horse Welfare Trust and the Clondalkin Equine Club will be doing a de-licing and deworming programme free of charge on the Thursday 28th March from noon to six pm. This will take place in the Clondalkin area. For more information contact Clondalkin Equine Club 085 8272763.
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Dublin South West Seán representative Crowe TD has said that St Vincent de Paul (SVP) has trebled its financial to families aid struggling to pay household fuel bills, that an estimated that 1200 people are dying every year from the
cold and at the same time the wealthiest 300 have seen theiir fortunes rise by 3.9 billion to a net worth of 66 billion. Deputy Seán Crowe said: "The St Vincent De Paul charity confirmed at a conference at the weekend that their
outlay on fuel assistance rose from €3.79m in 2008 to €10.37m in 2011. "In spite of SVP’s help, it is estimated that 1,200 people are dying as a direct result of fuel poverty every year. That is 1200 people, mostly elderly dying of
the cold or every hyperthermia year "In 2012, 16% of all calls to the four largest SVP offices were for help with meeting fuel bills. Only actual requests for food were higher at 23%. "This increased need for
SVP’s support with heating bills is in spite of the fact the Department of Social Protection spent €215m on fuel allowances to 400,000 people in 2012. "SVP and other frontline organisations say there been also a has significant increase in
the number of people whose electricity and gas bills have fallen into arrears.
"The greater use of pay-as-you-go meters, as they give householders more control over their energy use and budgeting would be helpful. These meters also allow families and individuals to pay small amounts on a regular basis and means they are not faced with a huge bill which discourages many elderly from turning on their heating applicances.
"We also know from official figures that those who are falling behind in payments are being cut off and that some energy providers were being "over-rigorous" in their responses when people fell behind in their heating bills. "The conference was also told that a major problem was the quality of housing stock, with many homes built in the last 40 years having insufficient insulation. "The cuts in heating during this cold period are cruel, unnecessary
and are directly leading to deaths in the community.
I agree with Seán Moynihan, the Chief Executive of the charity Alone, who has urged people to check on elderly neighbours during this bout of cold weather but these cuts are a direct attack on those same elderly, those with special needs, the poor and vulnerable in our communities.
Minister Burton will claim that there is no money available in taxes to pay for this but the reality is quite different.
"The day before the conference a special suppement in one newspaper on Ireland’s wealthiest 300, reported that the 300 wealthiest Irish people saw their wealth grow almost 6.3% (3.9bn) last year, to a net worth of more than 66bn. "It's a matter of Government choice but surely it wouldnt be unreasonable to ask some of these wealthy individuals to carry a larger part of the burden during these difficult days."
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Sinn Féin Clondalkin Councillor Matthew McDonagh has described as ‘shocking’ the revelation that reported incidents of illegal dumping have increased eight fold since 2010.
Cllr McDonagh said: “In recent months I have noticed a dramatic increase in illegal dumping in Clondalkin. However even I am shocked by the report delivered by Council management at March’s Area Committee meeting.
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“Since 2010 reports of illegal dumping have risen eight fold from 21 in 2010 to 171 in the first three months of 2013. This is a truly staggering figure.
“During this time South Dublin County Council have had substantial cuts in funding from both Fianna Fail and Fine Gael led governments. Vital services are being cuts as a result.
“It is my firm view that the increase in illegal dumping is directly linked to the decision by Greyhound to end the waiver for low income families.
“There is an urgent need to review this problem. I will be raising this matter with officials in the coming period. In the mean time I would once again urge people not to illegal dump their rubbish.”
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morTGaGe arrearS meaSureS Will Help leSSen THe pain infliCTeD by fianna fáil
Local Fine Gael TD and Minister of State, Brian Hayes has said that measures introduced by the Government to help restructure mortgages would help tens and thousands of people stay in their homes. Minister Hayes was also extremely critical of the negative and opportunistic response
of Fianna Fáil leader, Micheál Martin TD, Government whose created the situation whereby over 90,000 Irish mortgage holders are in arrears “Central Bank figures show the extent of Fianna Fáil’s legacy to Irish homeowners .94,500 mortgage accounts for private
dwellings are over 90 days in arrears, and 23,500 are in arrears for over 720 days.
“Measures announced by the Government will go a long way towards reducing that figure by ushering in widescale restructuring of mortgages for people whose loans are in
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distress. The banks must now step up their with engagement borrowers in difficulties so as to allow those in arrears to stay in their homes. “new targets stipulate that by the end of June 2013, the banks should have proposed sustainable mortgage solutions for 20% of distressed borrowers. the end of By September 2013, this will have reached 30%, and by the end of 2013, the banks should have proposed sustainable mortgage solutions for 50% of distressed borrowers. “Micheál Martin’s opportunistic criticism response to these measures is cynical in the extreme. People are hurting and Fianna Fáil is blatantly trying to take advantage of the misery it created. “Micheál Martin spent 14 years in the Cabinet of the Government which created the property bubble and subsequent economic crash. Yet he now has
the nerve to try and present himself as the of the champion beleaguered mortgage holder. Mortgage holders who bought properties at the height of the boom will find this very hard to stomach.
“The mortgage arrears situation has caused huge distress to many families across the country. The measures announced this week will help tens of thousands of people to stay in their homes. Fianna Fáil has no
credibility when it comes to the mortgage crisis and should really know better than to grandstand on an issue in which they are totally compromised. The people of this country know hypocrisy when they see it.”
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launCH of THe DeparTmenT of SoCial proTeCTion’S reDeSiGneD WebSiTe anD CuSTomer CHarTer anD aCTion plan 2013-2015
The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton T.D. has launched the Department’s redesigned website, www.welfare.ie, and published the Department’s Customer Charter and Action Plan. Visits to the welfare.ie website have risen from 2.7 million in 2009 to almost 5 million in 2012. Currently, the website receives 85,000
(up to 6 people)
visits a week. The website has been redesigned to more properly reflect the full range of services the Department now delivers, including Intreo, the new “one-stop shop” service for jobseekers. under Intreo, jobseekers receive their income supports and individually-tailored employment supports in the one place for the first time.
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Features of the redesigned website include: Improved navigation features for all users; Comprehensive information on the full range of supports and services provided by the Department of Social Protection A dedicated Intreo area - www.intreo.ie through which employers and jobseekers can access information and services on training and supports, entitlements; A new Find a Job service, integrated with the Jobs Ireland site, which allows jobseekers to search for jobs, training and internships in every county; Links to many of the country’s recruitment agencies; and Application forms for schemes. The website also allows for the reporting of suspected social welfare fraud. Last year, of the total of 28,000 anonymous and confidential reports received by the Department, 19,000 were submitted online. This compares to a total of 16,900 in 2011, of which 10,600 were submitted online. All reports are examined and
where relevant, are referred for follow-up action. The Customer Charter and Action Plan 2013-2015 sets out the Department’s commitment to improving its customer service over the next three years. Each week, nearly 1.5 million people receive a social welfare payment, and when qualified adults and children are included, almost 2.3 million people benefit from weekly payments. The Customer Charter and Action Plan outlines both the Department’s commitment to the highest quality of service, and the rights and responsibilities of Social Protection customers. The Customer Charter and Action Plan was developed following extensive consultation with customers through surveys, customer panels and representative groups. It sets out how the Department will measure its performance against the service standards in the plan and commits to reporting on progress through its Annual Report. It also includes the contact channels for customers who wish to make a complaint.
Ó SnoDaiGH CallS for JuSTiCe for THaliDomiDe SurvivorS Speaking in the Dáil Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South Central Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD called on the Government to apologise Thalidomide survivors and introduce a statutory healthcare package and compensation package to meet their needs.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said; “In the Programme for Government produced over two years ago, a commitment was made to compensate Thalidomide survivors in Ireland. Over two years later they are still awaiting, in fact they have been waiting over 50 years for a proper and full acceptance of the State’s responsibility in allowing the administration of a poison to pregnant women in Ireland.
“In 1959, thalidomide began being sold and issued as a “safe and non-toxic drug without side-effects” and suitable as an effective treatment to prevent morning sickness nausea and sleeplessness during pregnancy and it was allowed remain on sale in 1961 when the State knew of the dangers which resulted in horrific consequences of this drug such as deformed limbs; malformation of hearts, bowels, uterus and gallbladder, short life spans, deafness, weakened facial muscles, and other countries had withdrawn that. “The 32 survivors of Thalidomide are entitled to justice for what they have to go through daily. The State has a role in this. Indeed, the State due to their lack of action in 1961 when they were first aware of dangers, are partially responsible for the injuries sustained. I am calling on the government to issue the apology that is owed, alongside a statutory healthcare package to meet the needs of those with thalidomide disabilities and a structured compensation package should also be introduced.”
miniSTer burTon offiCially launCHeS inTreo for TallaGHT anD offiCially openS neW premiSeS for CiTizenS informaTion CenTre in TallaGHT Your FREE Local Newspaper
The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, T.D. visited Tallaght last week where she officially opened the latest of the Department’s InTREO offices at the Square. The Minister also officially opened the new premises for Tallaght Citizens Information at Hainault House. A key element of the Department’s Pathways to Work strategy, InTREO is a
transformative approach which offers jobseekers their income supports and tailored employment supports in the same place for the first time. Speaking at the launch of the Tallaght InTREO Centre, Minister Burton “Our priority said: under the Pathways to Work strategy is to ensure that new employment opportunities go to people currently on the Live Register. That is
what InTREO is about. In the past, Ireland’s welfare system for jobseekers was characterised as being largely passive and providing benefits only. InTREO is pro-active, ensuring jobseekers get not just the income supports they need but also employment supports to help them on the path back to work, training or education.” InTREO is already delivering - clients can access employment supports in InTREO offices within a week or two of registration as opposed to a minimum of three months previously. Similarly, decisions on welfare claims are made within days instead of weeks, and client attendance at the engagement sessions with case workers has increased significantly.
There are a number of key elements which make up the InTREO service. They include: Activation measures including client profiling, early group
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engagement and one-to-one meetings focused on personalised employment supports and on-going monitoring of the client’s progress. integrated An decision-making process leading to reduced bureaucracy and delivering faster decisions. An integrated reception providing a one-stop-shop. Instead of engaging separately with three different services in different locations, jobseekers can now register for all services in the one location. A ‘social contract’ between the Department and the client which sets out the service commitments of the Department but also the responsibilities of the client. Tailored guidance and employment supports will be provided to jobseekers. In return, jobseekers are expected to accept that continued income support will be contingent on their full engagement with employment supports and activation
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Lucky Lucozade Sport competition winners Kevin Nolan and Sean Nolan from Lucan pictured with Brian O'Driscoll. Kevin and Sean got to meet some of the Irish Rugby team players during a training session at Carton House, Co, Kildare ahead of their final Six Nations game against Italy. (Pic.INPHO/Morgan Treacy)
measures. Enhanced employer engagement at national and local level to maximise access to jobs opportunities and potential employees
Separately, Minister Burton performed the official opening of the Citizens Information Centre. Speaking with staff, volunteers and guests at the Centre, the Minister said: “Citizens Information has played
an invaluable role in Tallaght over many years and I want to pay tribute to all those involved who have done so much for the community. The establishment of this office is a welcome development which will ensure an enhanced service for the people of Tallaght and improved working conditions for the staff and volunteers working here.” The Citizens
Information Board has re-developed its website www.keepingyourhome .ie to provide detailed information for people in mortgage arrears and people who are at risk of going into arrears.
In addition, the Mortgage Arrears Information Helpline has been established to provide guidance and assistance to people with concerns about their mortgage.
KeaTinG announCeS a neW mulTi-million euro primary Care CenTre for luCan GeTS To aHeaD folloWinG HiS 18 monTH CampaiGn Your FREE Local Newspaper
Deputy Derek Keating can exclusively report that, following discussions with the HSE Senior Management and a local consortium health care of professionals, a Primary
Care Centre for Lucan which will service the Greater Lucan area has been approved by the HSE and contracts have been offered. public/private This partnership programme
to open a new Primary Care Service in Lucan was initiated by local TD, Derek Keating, 18 months ago. It will mean that all health and social care services in Lucan will be located
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in one multi-purpose building which will incorporate GP, Public Health nurse, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Dietician, Social Work and Psychological services along with the development of an x-ray service, a blood analysis service and many other community based multi-disciplinary health professionals available to the residents of Lucan.
“I am also happy to confirm that the Ballyowen Castle Shopping Centre is the location for this new community based and dynamic health service. “The development of a primary care service is an essential component of this Government’s health policy and it will give the residents of
Lucan direct access to an integrated multi-disciplinary team based in the community” said Deputy Derek Keating. This new development will see a major shift from patients having to trek across to Blanchardstown Hospital or Tallaght Hospital to have necessary treatments. Speaking about the development, Deputy Keating said “I am really excited that Lucan will finally have this primary care facility. Health is at the centre of this Government’s recovery policy. Remember two years ago when we entered Government, we committed to protecting our health service from collapse. Already in Dublin Mid-West, a wonderful
Primary Care Centre is in full operation at Cherry Orchard Hospital providing excellent community based medical intervention for the residents of Palmerstown and some parts of Clondalkin. I am delighted that Lucan will get its new Primary Health Centre". The fact that contracts have been offered will mean that the planning process should commence within two months and, if the private/public partnership is agreed, it is very possible that a Primary Health Care Centre, which is in fact a mini-hospital, could be open within 12 months said Deputy Derek Keating. I am currently conducting a feasibility study for a Hospice service to be based in
Peamount Hospital grounds and I will continue to press for the highest standards in health care provision for the residents of Lucan.
When I commenced advocating for this 18 months ago, I was spurred on by the local pharmacies, nurses, GPs and many residents who outlined to me the stress of having to travel to Blanchardstown and Tallaght Hospitals. This new Primary Care Centre will be at the centre of health in our provision community and I am delighted to have the privilege to be directly involved in leading the campaign to have it agreed with the offer of contracts to a local private consortium.
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Hurling star Brian Horgan and friends was on hand to kick off the fundraising Night at the Dog’s at Harold’s Cross Greyhound Stadium in aid of Tallamanjaro Ospideal Climb 2013. Taking place on Friday April 5th, this will be the main fundraising event to help raise money for new specialised equipment for children going to theatre in the National Children’s Hospital Tallaght. For more information on the fundraising event at Harolds Cross Greyhound Stadium please log onto: www.igb.ie
KiDS Go free on luaS aT eaSTer
The popular family-friendly “Kids go Free” on Luas special offer will be available on Good Friday as well as Easter Monday this year. Many people had enquired if the offer covers Good Friday and RPA are happy to confirm that the whole Easter weekend is covered. The offer has been running very successfully through the months of February, March
and April 2013. Two children may travel free of charge with each adult who has a valid Luas Adult ticket. Initial reaction has been very positive. This is one of a range of new fare initiatives which the national Transport Authority and the transport operators will be bringing to the travelling public over 2013. Luas carried a record 29.4
million passengers in 2012 and it is clear that this free offer has encouraged even more customers onto one of Europe’s most successful light rail systems. Many parents have availed of the offer already and numbers are expected to grow as people become aware of it and use Luas to explore the delights of the city, many of which are also free.
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announCemenT of €1 million for neW youTH CaféS WelComeD Your FREE Local Newspaper
Fine Gael Senator for Dublin South West, Cáit Keane, has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Children and Affairs, Frances Youth Fitzgerald, that €1 million is to be allocated this year to support the development of
new youth cafés across the country and across the Dublin South-West constituency.
is a welcome “This announcement by Minister Fitzgerald as the availability of these funds reinforces
the Government’s commitment to the extension of quality youth café throughout the country, in particular noting the repeated emphasis that young people have placed on the need for safe, alcohol-free recreational
GriffiTH ColleGe SCHoolS WeeK
facilities. “The Youth Café Funding Scheme is concerned with promoting the structured development of new youth cafés around the country by giving support to local organisations and groups which are providing youth services. The criteria for the Scheme places a clear focus on both long term sustainability and service planning. The scheme will be administered by Pobal on behalf of the Department.
"The funding scheme was initially set up in 2010/2011 at a time when the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs launched the publication of two associated relevant publications. The aim of Youth Cafés in Ireland: A best practice guide is to contribute to the formation of a solid policy foundation for the support and development of the youth café model of intervention with children and young
people in Ireland. In addition, the Youth Café Toolkit gives advice on how to set up and run a youth café in Ireland is designed to assist in the practicalities and day to day issues involved for anybody involved in the management of a youth café.” Details of the scheme are available on the Department of Children and Youth Affairs website at www.dcya.gov.ie
DiSabiliTy aGenCy To reCeive free TraininG WorKSHop WorTH €2,000
Pictured are students from Caritas College Dublin attending the opening of Griffith College Dublin’s Schools Week where over 500 second level and FETAC students visited Griffith College to experience classes and workshops in the areas of media, computing, games development, legal debating and business to get a taster of what it’s like to study the subject at third level. For more information www.gcd.ie
The Open Training College has extended its offer of a free educational workshop (worth over €2,000!) for those disability agencies in Ireland wishing to avail of preparation training for the upcoming revised HIQA Standards for Residential Disability Services. The offer is now extended until 30th September, 2013, in anticipation of the publication of the revised HIQA Standards later in the year. Simply LIKE the Open Training College Facebook page and your organisation will be included in a draw that will take place during October 2013. The one lucky winner will receive a customised training workshop for up to 20 colleagues that will explore the revised HIQA Standards for Residential
Disability Services. Maybe a student or friend working in another disability agency would like to be included? If that is the case, the Open Training College would be delighted if you could pass on this information about this free workshop offer. LIKE us here: www.facebook.com/theopentrainingcollege We look forward to including you on our Facebook page which we update weekly with one or two interesting and informative articles that are of interest to students and people working in the disability and wider nonprofit sector. For further information about the Open Training College please visit the website www.opentrainingcollege.com
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Show us your nuclear plans, Dublin MEP tells UK
Any plans to expand Britain's nuclear facilities should be made known to Ireland, as both countries would be vulnerable in the event of an accident or terrorist attack, an Irish MEP said this week. Fine Gael's Gay Mitchell asked the British government to give a comprehensive update on their nuclear energy programme to the Irish-British parliamentary body. Speaking to mark the 2nd anniversary of the Fukishima nuclear disaster in Japan earlier this month, Mr Mitchell said it was clear the uK seeks to reduce its dependency on fossil fuels and secure future supplies by developing its nuclear capacity. “A forthcoming report by three of the uK government's most senior scientific advisers is expected to encourage the development of nuclear
eurolInk... what’s happenIng In the european parlIament
generation technologies not currently used commercially anywhere. The dossier is expected to suggest that these new technologies could provide as much as two-thirds of uK electricity by 2050, implying a huge expansion of facilities,” he said.
But Mr Mitchell stressed that Ireland must be involved in monitoring the growth of Britain's nuclear plants. “If an accident or attack took place at one of Britain's nuclear facilities, it would have detrimental consequences for Ireland. The Irish-British Assembly Parliamentary would provide a suitable platform for considering this issue and could host a special meeting on the future of nuclear energy safety,” he added. Britain's west coast is already home to four operational nuclear sites, including five nuclear reactors, as well as the
reprocessing plant at Sellafield in Cumbria. It is understood that EDF Energy, which has operated eight out of the uK's 10 nuclear plants, plans to expand two sites at Hinkley Point in Somerset and Sizewell in the South-East. EU rules will help disgruntled shoppers
new rules agreed this week will help European shoppers settle disputes with traders without having to undergo what can often turn into lengthy court proceedings. The legislation provides for the setting up of Alternative Dispute Resolution schemes - known as ADRs - a fast, cheap and informal way to resolve consumer dissatisfaction. Although most countries already have ADR measures in place, they are often considered unusable and not consumer friendly. The new directive will require every Eu member state to ensure
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that ADR bodies exist for all business sectors. Labour MEP Phil Prendergast said shoppers will be able to use the new rules to get out-of-court remedies for complaints about any goods or services, whether bought in a shop domestically, across borders or online. “It has huge cost saving benefits for consumers, with an estimated potential to save consumers about €22.5 billion in court proceedings a year,” she said. ADR procedures will either be free of charge or at a nominal fee and run according to fixed deadlines. The ADR procedure must reach an outcome within 90 calendar days. MEPs vote to tackle match-fixing in sport
Protection for whistle-blowers who lift the lid on match-fixing was just one of the measures put
forward by MEPs this week as a method of rooting out fraudulent practices in sport. A report approved by the European Parliament called for a range of laws to crack down on corruption, including common penalties for match-fixing and a code of conduct among stakeholders in the sporting world. It follows a recent Interpol report into illegal betting which revealed that 380 football matches in Europe had been investigated for match-fixing, including top-flight domestic league matches and qualifiers in the European Championship and World Cup.
Speaking from Brussels, Irish MEP and former GAA President Sean Kelly said the Interpol findings were only the “tip of the iceberg” and that it was clear major criminal gangs were benefiting. “Profits of match-fixing are ultimately
funding the criminal underworld, the drugs trade and human trafficking. We're talking about professional fraudsters who operate under the cover of massive global networks,” he warned. The Fine Gael MEP appealed to the European Commission to cooperate with third countries by taking part in the negotiations for an international convention of the Council of Europe to combat the manipulation of sports results. “The Eu could use its influence to put pressure on during negotiations on Asian 'betting havens' like Hong Kong and Singapore,” he added. Fianna Fáil MEP Liam Aylward also warned that match-fixing was “threatening the integrity of sport” and called for a “zero tolerance” approach on corruption to be agreed between member states, police, gambling operators and sporting bodies.
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The Legal Column
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• Legal Actions that your Lender (s) took against you. When you sign a mortgage or loan application, you automatically give the proposed Lender permission to both, send information about your repayments to a Credit Reference Agency, such as the ICB, and to seek information about your credit history. A poor credit History makes it very unlikely that you will be approved for a loan – even if you are in secure employment with a steady income. Your Report is not limited to details about personal loans and mortgages. It may also contain information on Leasing Agreements, Credit Cards and Hire Purchase Agreements.
IN THIS WEEKS EDITION, ROMAINE SCALLY SOLICITOR, PRINCIPAL IN THE FIRM OF ROMAINE SCALLY & CO. SOLICITORS (TEL: 01 4599 506) ANSWERS READERS QUERIES IN RELATION TO READER’S TOPICAL QUERIES. Q. CAN I CHECK MY CREDIT RATING? I HOPE TO APPLY FOR A MORTGAGE SOON AND wOULD LIKE TO MAKE SURE THAT THERE IS NOTHING IN MY PAST wHICH IS LIKELY TO COME BACK AND HAUNT ME! A. I presume you are talking about your personal Credit Rating, which refers to your credit worthiness as an individual. This is an evaluation made by Credit Bureaus of your overall credit history and is used to evaluate a potential Borrower’s ability to repay debts. In Ireland, the Central Agency that stores information about Borrowers, and their repayments, is the IRISH CREDIT BUREAU (ICB). The information is sent in by the Lenders themselves and held on a centralised Data Base, that can be consulted each time you make an application for credit from a Member. Most Lenders in Ireland are members of the ICB. The information on Borrowers, that is held by the ICB is kept for a five year period after each loan is closed. This means, that if you have a loan or mortgage, either currently outstanding or paid off within the last five years, it is likely that the ICB holds an individual credit ‘Report’ for you. This report includes the following details:
• Your name, date of birth, address or addresses used by you in relation to financial transactions. • The names of Lenders and Account numbers of Loans you currently hold, or that were active within the last five years. • Repayments made, or missed, for each month, on each loan. • The failure to clean off any loan. • Loans that were settled for less than you owed, and
Corresponding with the information held on your Credit Report is what’s known as the CBS Credit Bureau Score (CBS). Your CBS is a number which summarises your Credit Report at a particular point in time. According to the ICB, your CBS may assist Lenders in the faster processing of a loan application and serves as a more objective indicator of risk, as factors such a gender, race or nationality are excluded from consideration. It might make for more consistent decision-making, since both positive and negative information are factored into calculating the score. It is a good idea to check your Credit Report every so often, to make sure that it does not contain any errors. under the Data Protection Acts 1988/2003, you are entitled to receive a full copy of your Report, held on the ICB Data Base. You can apply on line at www.icb.ie, or by contacting the ICB directly. The cost of each application is €6.00 It usually takes between three to four days to process, after which time your Report will be sent to you by post. It is not uncommon for a Report to contain mistakes or incorrect information. This could be caused by a consumer not completing a Direct Debit form correctly, and missing a Loan Repayment as a result. An error in your Credit Report might also be caused by your Lender agreeing to postpone payments for a period, but then forgetting to notify the ICB. This type of error may be more likely in today’s economic environment, where the number of borrowers re-negotiating repayment terms with their Lenders has increased.
The ICB cannot change your Credit Report unless the Lender requests it to do so in writing. If you find a mistake in your Report therefore, you should ask your Lender to write to the ICB with details of the change and request a copy of the letter. If there is an undue delay in your Lender sending the letter, or you experience any other problems in having your Report amended, contact the office of the Data Protection Commissioner (Canal House, Station Road,
Portarlington, Co. Laois. www.dataprotection.ie). under the Data Protection Acts, you have the right to demand that inaccurate information about you be corrected and the office can assist you in this regard. If you wanted to see what a Credit Report actually looks like, you can download a sample ‘credit file’ from www.dataprotection.ie. The file shows the credit history of a fictitious individual along with explanations regarding how the data is presented.
Q. MY HUSBAND AND I ARE SEPARATED AND HAVE TwO YOUNG CHILDREN, AGED 7 AND 10. MY HUSBAND HAS RECENTLY LOST HIS JOB, BUT HAS BEEN OFFERED A REPLACEMENT JOB IN THE UNITED STATES. I ACCEPT THAT HE REALLY HAS LITTLE ALTERNATIVE BUT TO ACCEPT THIS JOB. HOwEVER, I AM VERY CONCERNED ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF MY CHILDREN BEING RELOCATED. CAN YOU GIVE ME ANY REASSURANCE ON THIS POINT?
A. Parental disputes over the relocation of children are a relatively modern phenomenon. They are a by-product of travel, technology, and the world becoming increasingly smaller. Recession is also a factor and Courts across all jurisdictions are seeing increasing numbers of applications being brought before them in relation to relocation issues, as a result of families ‘job seeking’ in other Jurisdictions. Judges and child-custody Evaluators often look on relocation issues as the most difficult to resolve.
The starting point for any consideration of an application for a relocation to change the residence of children must be done pursuant to Section 11 (1) of the Guardianship of Infants Act 1964, and in particular Section 3, which provides, ‘where in any proceedings before the Court the custody, guardianship or upbringing of a child is in question, the Court in deciding that question, shall regard the welfare of that child as the first and paramount consideration’. In considering the welfare of the child, consideration by the Court must be given to a variety of factors. A Judge would have to consider, in any application, to remove a child to another jurisdiction, which of the two outcomes would provide the greater stability of lifestyle for the child, or children. Consideration would also be given to the availability or capacity for and frequency of access by the non-custodial parent, the past record of each parent in the relationship with the child, insofar as it impinges on the welfare of the
by Romaine Scally child, and the contribution to such stability for the child, which would be provided by the new environment in which the child might reside, with particular regard to the influence of the extended family. In your favour, against any removal of the children outside of the jurisdiction, your children are of an age when they have already established links, not only with their school, but also with their extended family here in Ireland. There is no absolute guarantee that your husband’s new job in the united States will be permanent and it may indeed be his intention to return to Ireland as soon as circumstances allow. It is a difficult question and one which would have to be gone into at great length with your Legal Team, in the event that you do find yourself at the receiving end of an application to remove the children from the jurisdiction. From what I can gather however, your husband is an Irish national and as such, there should be no immediate threat of any urgent application and you will have plenty of time to deal with any such application and answer any case made in favour of removing the children from the jurisdiction.
Q. I AM AN EMPLOYEE ON LONG-TERM SICK LEAVE BUT wAS RECENTLY PASSED ‘FIT’ BY OUR COMPANY DOCTOR. MY OwN G.P. HOwEVER CLAIMS THAT I AM ‘UNFIT’ AND CERTAINLY I DO NOT FEEL wELL ENOUGH TO RETURN TO wORK. CAN MY EMPLOYERS INSIST THAT I RETURN TO wORK, OR TERMINATE MY EMPLOYMENT? A. Your Employer would be well advised to seek a Medical Assessment of you by a Specialist, prior to taking any further steps. Following receipt of a Report after this assessment, it may be possible to agree measures with you, which facilitate your return to work, perhaps on a phased basis initially. If your Employer were to terminate your Contract of Employment, then, you could claim discrimination on the grounds of Disability, contrary to the Employment Equality Acts 1998 to 2008, or claim for unfair Dismissal, contrary to the unfair Dismissals Act 1977 to 2008, assuming at all times that you have at least one year’s service prior to bringing such a claim.
romAine sCAlly & Co, soliCiTors
operate a FREE LEGAL ADVICE CLINIC on the second Wednesd ay of every month from 2.00pm until 6.00p m at their offices in Main Street, Tallaght, Dublin 24. NEXT CLINIC: WED. 10TH APRIL. No Appointment is neces sary. We look forward to answ ering your legal queries in person.
romaine scally is the principal in the firm of romAine sCAlly And CompAny soliCiTors main street Tallaght, dublin 24 Tel 4599506 FAX 4599510 email: email@example.com
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wINDOw-MAN, PADDY wINSTON “I have been in the window trade since I left school at the age of 15. and now, at the age of 51, I have many years and lots of experience in the design, manufacture and fitting of aluminium and uPVC windows, doors and conservatories. Over the years, through the boom, I noticed that, even though there was plenty of money around for the purchase of houses, builders still managed to fit the cheapest, most unreliable windows and doors they could possibly get there hands on, most of these are now giving terrible trouble with broken handles, hinges, locks etc. etc.. So, I decided to set up this service, to get your windows and doors to perform in the manner they were designed and that’s to keep the heat in and the cold out... IF YOU ARE HAVING PROBLEMS wITH YOUR wINDOwS OR DOORS, GIVE ME A CALL...CHEERS...PADDY”
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novenaS novenaS novenaS novenaS
MIRACLE PRAYER - THANKSGIVING Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail. J.C.
MIRACLE PRAYER Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail. Audrey
MIRACLE PRAYER Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail. Annoco
THANKS TO THE HOLY SPIRIT. Holy Spirit, You who solve all problems, light all roads so that I can attain my goal. You who give me the Divine gift to forgive and forget and forget all evil against me and that in all instances in my life you are with me. I want in this short prayer to thank You for all the things You have done for me and
confirm once again that I never want to be seperated from you in eternal glory. Thank you for your Mercy toward me and mine. The prayer must be said for 3 consecutive days and the request will be granted. The prayer must be published after the favor is granted. A.D.
UNFAILING PRAYER TO SAINT ANTHONY “Blessed be God in His Angels and His Saints” Holy St. Anthony, gentlest of Saints, your love for God and Charity for His creatures, made you worthy, when on earth, to possess miraculous powers. Miracles waited on your word, which you were ever ready to speak for those in trouble or anxiety. Encouraged by this thought, I implore of you to obtain for me (request). The answer to my prayer may require a miracle, even so, you are the Saint of Miracles. O gentle and loving St. Anthony, whose heart was ever full of human sympathy whisper my petition into the ears of of the Sweet Infant Jesus, who loved to be folded in your arms; and the gratitude of my heart will ever be yours. Publish when request is granted A.D.
MIRACLE PRAYER Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail.u.K.
MIRACLE PRAYER Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear
Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail. C.L.
MIRACLE PRAYER Dear Heart of Jesus in the past I have asked for many favours. This time I ask you for a very special one. Take it, dear Heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes it will become your favour and not mine. Amen. Say this prayer for three days. Promise publication and favour will be granted no matter how impossible. never known to fail. Mary D.
NOVENA TO ST. JUDE May the Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved and preserved throughtout the world now and forever. Sacred Heart of Jesus pray for us. St Jude worker of miracles pray for us. St Jude helper of the hopeless pray for us. Say this prayer 9 times a day, by the eighth day your prayer will be answered. Say it for 9 days. It has never been known to fail. Publication must be promised. Thank you St Jude, H.L.
PLEASE NOTE: If you wish to have your novena published please make a donation to our selected charity. Send a postal order or cheque made payable to Solas Centre (NCBI) and send, along with your novena to: Newsgroup, PO Box 3430, Tallaght, Dublin 24.
If you require any further information call us on 01 4519000.
HiGH renT forCeS mill floriST To CloSe
Sinn Féin Dublin Mid-West representative has said that the closure of Mills and Bloom florists in the Clondalkin Mill Centre last week was ‘a direct result of the excessive rents charged by Dunloe Ewart’. Ó Broin has warned that ‘unless action is taken by the landlord to reduce the rents other businesses will close.’ Ó Broin said:“Mills and Bloom florist in Clondalkin’s Mill Centre has been in operation for fifteen years. It was one of the original when the tenants centre opened. “Like many local traders the florist was more than just a business. It was part of the local community.
“For several years the owners of Mills and Bloom were trying to get landlord Dunloe Ewart to reduce the rents. Despite the massive fall in custom the florists were expected to pay rent set in 2005 at the peak of the boom. “unfortunately Dunlo Ewart refused to listen and now the florist has closed. “This is a bad day not only for Mills and Bloom and their staff but for Clondalkin. I am also concerned that more struggling businesses will follow if rents are not reduced to current market levels. "Dunloe Ewart need to act now before more businesses close and more jobs are lost.”
To aDverTiSe in any of our publiCaTionS Tel: 01 451 3822 or viSiT our WebSiTe on www.newsgroup.ie
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To prevenT a burGlary...SeCure DoorS are your firST STepS 22
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I know from my training as a mental-health counsellor that the threat of break-in plays on many minds and particularly late at night, and this often shrinks the amount of sleep we need to cope with all the ups and downs that life brings. Two of every three burglaries in Ireland are through a front, back or sliding patio door. If you have security concerns I suggest you consider increasing the resistance provided by your front, back and patio doors, and downstairs windows. You could also look at your bedroom security, but first of all let’s look at the facts:
Burglars are entering front doors by: 1. Snapping, bumping, picking or drilling the eurocylinder lock contained in more than 90% of all front, back and sliding patio
and porch doors. 2. using a plastic or credit card to disengage the latch. 3. Kicking in the lower panel on uPvc doors. 4. Kicking in timber doors. 5. Breaking glass on the side door panels. 6. Prising open or lifting patio doors and porch doors off their rails. 7. Removing glazing slips from windows and then removing the glass. 8. Breaking locks and glass in windows. 9. Cutting and then removing the glass from the windows.
The solutions: • As most entrance doors used in our homes will not stop a burglar you should give consideration to a concept that is tried and proven in many other countries, where as a result recorded break-ins are on the decline. If you are having a new door installed
by Ciarán o’Connell Director burglarybusters
soon you should insist on getting a door that comes with a steel frame instead of a hardwood or pvc frame. This is the only way to ensure that the locks have the strong support they need and the door itself cannot be kicked-in.
• The Zentry Residential Security Door for front and back doors is amazingly strong as it is the only type of door that uses a steel frame and contains a special extra thick security laminated glass that is not found in the traditional doors we use in Ireland. This door also comes with a twelve point locking system. What many people don’t understand is that these doors look identical to the normal door, yet provide the maximum levels of security. See www.securitycertifieddoors .ie
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Zentry Security Door with 14mm Laminated Security Glass Side Panel
• Most windows used in houses in Ireland contain external slips that can be easily removed. This then allows the glass panes to be taken out and enables easy access for the opportunist thief. A new system that prevents this from happening has just arrived on the market and is now available from Burglarybusters. When we carry out this work we can also replace the existing glass with a special extra thick security laminated glass that will stay intact -even when subjected to an aggressive attack. As most attacks on windows take place at the back or side of the house this innovation is really worth considering for all your vulnerable downstairs windows. • As an alternative Security Grilles or internal shutters for doors and windows situated at the back of the house are becoming more common and if necessary these can be concealed behind curtains or blinds.
• Regarding Sliding Patio and Porch doors there is a fantastic and inexpensive lock now available called a Zentry Sliding Door lock that stops the door from being lifted off its rails. See details on Home Page or the Patio Door Security page at www.burglarybusters.ie
• Much anxiety arises for people living alone and particularly when they are in bed. Much of this is to do
Zentry Bedroom or Safe Room Door
with fears about being woken in the middle of the night and finding a burglar in the bedroom. A practical and popular initiative here is to turn this room into a safe room by replacing the bedroom door with a security door and installing security glazing or a security grille or shutter to the window. Options are available for all, including people residing in bungalows where there is a greater risk of this happening. All of the above are possible and each homeowner has different needs. However, it is vital that where you
increase the levels of security that you have an escape plan in place to enable occupants to get out quickly in the case of emergency.
Finally, as several of the above solutions are becoming more popular I am now invited regularly to talk to community and local groups. Should you wish for me to attend one of your meetings you can contact me at the numbers below. Phone 01-4600016 0862444938 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
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