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JobsPlus InItIatIve announced

28TH FEB. 2013 P.O. BOx 3430, TALLAGHT, DuBLIn 24 TEL: 451 3822 email: info@newsgroup.ie web: www.newsgroup.ie

The Minister for Social Joan Protection, Burton, T.D. has announced details of the new JobsPlus scheme which will incentivise businesses to hire additional employees from the Live Register. The innovative job creation scheme is focused on the long-term unemployed, providing a cash-flow benefit to businesses which hire jobseekers who have been on the Live Register for 12 months or more. It is one of a series of strategic and reforming measures which the Department of Social Protection is

implementing as part of Government's the Action Plan for Jobs 2013. Speaking at the opening of an Employment and Advice Fair in Marshes Shopping Centre in Dundalk, Minister Burton said: "JobsPlus will help businesses to create new jobs and reduce long-term unemployment. Since becoming Minister for Social Protection, I have radically reformed the Department's services for jobseekers, launching Intreo - a one-stop shop service which jobseekers can get their financial and employment supports in the one place for the

scheme will incentivise businesses to hire additional employees from the live Register

first time. We are also the implementing Pathways to Work strategy, which aims to get 75,000 people who are currently long-term unemployed back into the workforce by 2015. JobsPlus is another valuable addition to the range of measures being undertaken by the Department to get people back to work." The scheme will provide a fixed grant payment to businesses for each new employee. There will be two levels of incentive: • In respect of recruits unemployed for between 12 and 24 months: €7,500

• In respect of recruits unemployed for more than 24 months: €10,000

From an employer perspective, the typical value of the incentive over a two-year period is circa 23% of the gross minimum wage cost (including employer PRSI) for a person exiting the Live Register to commence full-time employment. It is proposed that the new incentive will be payable, on a monthly in arrears basis, over a two-year period. "This is a scheme that will be straightforward to administer and will encourage the

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dIgItal and gReen economIes - ImPoRtant dImensIons of actIon Plan foR Jobs 2013

The Minister for Communications & Energy, Pat Rabbitte T.D. has welcomed the launch of the second Action Plan for Jobs, the centrepiece of the Government’s strategy to create jobs. He underlined the high potential of both the digital sector and green economy to job growth and noted that his Department will soon be launching two important job creation reforms highlighted in the Plan. In the Energy sector the Plan contains a commitment to greatly enhance Irelands energy efficiency performance. The Plan also contains an

initiative to incentivise online trading. The details of this will be announced shortly as part of the launch of a national Digital Strategy. The initiative aims to help Irish businesses gain competitiveness and grow by having online access to new markets and a wider customer base. Minister Rabbitte noted that the action plan also highlights a range of commitments aimed at ensuring the operating environment for business is optimised notably in terms of energy infrastructure and the implementation of the national Broadband Plan published last year.

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JobsPlus InItIatIve announced fRom Page 1

of recruitment jobseekers who have been on the Live Register for 12 months or more," Minister Burton said. It is expected that the new scheme will be launched at the end of In the June 2013. interim, the existing incentive employer schemes will remain in place. In addition to the above, Minister Burton 10,000 announced additional activation places in the Budget on as such schemes Community Employment, JobBridge and Tús to help people return to work, training or education. In all, the Department will spend more than €1 billion on activation schemes and related supports this year, providing places for 85,000 people. Minister Burton, in conjunction with the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Fitzgerald Frances

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bRand new sHowHome oPen at bRoadfIeld manoR,

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RatHcoole, soutH county dublIn

Cavan Developments are opening a new, modern, spacious family showhome, this weekend at Broadfield Manor, Rathcoole Village, South County, Dublin.

come with all appliances as standard, including American style fridge/freezer and double eye level oven. There is a wide choice of kitchens available.

These expert builders have a great reputation for quality and excellent finish and celebrate 35 years of building quality homes this year. A mark of confidence in the company’s strength is the fact that they have provided homes for the same purchasers over the years and finished all their developments to a very high standard.

The master bedroom is very spacious and comes with bathroom and walk in dressing room, a ladies favourite, in walnut oak.

As three and four bedroom homes go it is very large 1,850 square feet or 172 square metres. All the rooms and living areas are large and well proportioned. Solar panels are standard and all the homes have an A energy rating, this reduces heating bills considerably. The kitchens are very well equipped and

Windows and facia boards are pvc and walls are brick and dry dashed giving a maintenance free exterior.

Cavan Developments admit that this new showhome is the best house they ever built.

Kitchen, bathroom, en-suite walls and floors all have extensive tiling with very good quality porcelain ceramic tiles and these come as standard. High quality wardrobes and fireplaces, heated towel rails in bathrooms, corner bath and large showers, to name but a few, all come as standard.

All houses have rear gardens and front gardens which are walled with cobblelock driveways which can accommodate three cars.

no expense has been spared by Cavan Developments, in the construction of these new 3 and 4 bedroom homes.

Cavan Developments have a tradition for quality and expertise and are building new homes for over 35 years.

Rathcoole is a friendly, traditional, country village situated on the n7 and just minutes from the Red Cow and M50. Commuting to Dublin couldn’t be easier by car, bus, or with the new Luas line being constructed at City West. It’s the perfect village by the City. Primary and Secondary Schools catering for boys and girls are only a short walk (200 metres) . Cavan Developments have had a very positive response and huge interest in these new homes. With only twelve of these new homes on offer and five already sold off the plans, Cavan Developments feel some of the reasons behind this are:It is a brand new development of concrete

built, modern 3 and 4 bedroom family homes which is a low density development and is family orientated, beside schools etc. A place people want to live.

Of course this house is 1,850 square feet, along with the free kitchen appliances and extensive ceramic tiling is very popular, but other features such as the large master bedroom with walk in wardrobe, walled front gardens with cobblelock driveways and no management fees are very important to people as well.

There was never a better time to buy, house prices are now at the bottom. The homes at Broadfield Manor are of excellent quality and very good value. Prices from €279,000. Loans can be arranged. Showhomes are on view this Saturday and Sunday 2pm to 5pm. Or by appointment. Phone Cavan Developments 045 878108. www.cavandevelopments.com


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6

tHe squaRe town centRe sPonsoRIng tHe gatHeRIng dublIn 2013

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South Dublin County Tourism Ltd in partnership with South Dublin County Council, Fingal Leader Partnership and The Gathering Ireland will host almost forty events through sport and culture as part of the biggest tourism initiative to take place under The Gathering 2013. The Gathering Dublin welcomes The Square Town Centre as a sponsor for a year long promotion.

economy of South Dublin County. Lead agency, South Dublin County Tourism is delighted with the support from local agencies and sports bodies. The Gathering Dublin 2013 will focus primarily on sports with events including American Football, Baseball, Cricket, Football, Bridge, Poker, Kickboxing, Cycling, Martial Arts, Canoeing and much much more!

South Dublin County is now recognised as a leading sports and events destination in Ireland and is proud to have Tallaght Stadium, national Basketball Arena, national Baseball Facility, Peamount united Football Grounds and Citywest Hotel and Convention Centre as key venues participating in the local initiative - The Gathering Dublin 2013. All venues and sports partners have a strong and established reputation in hosting events and are looking forward to welcoming international teams to the county next year. Approximately 30,000 additional visitors will visit the county in 2013 and the series of tournaments and events will attract in excess of €50 million into the local

‘We are delighted The Square Town Centre is a sponsor of The Gathering Dublin, as their offering is really attractive to visitors and helps enhance the tourism product of South Dublin County’. Sarah Brooks, Tourism Executive, SDCT. ‘The Square Town Centre is delighted to sponsor The Gathering Dublin 2013 and work in conjunction with South Dublin County Tourism’. Cathryn McMenamy, Commercial Manager. more information For www.thegatheringdublin.com or email info@thegatheringdublin.com. The Square Town Centre information can be found at www.thesquare.ie.

The total incidents reported to SDCC in 2012 was 419 up from 161 in 2011. Total complaints reported to SDCC in 2012 were 468 up from 225. There were many complaints about the physical condition of property reported to SDCC - 64 in 2012 up from 20 in 2011, The 2012 figure is more than triple the 2011 figure. Commenting on the figures, Cllr. Trevor Gilligan said “I understand times are tough for many people however we must ensure that

people are allowed to live in peace and that the ASB figures for 2013 reduce drastically.” “I thank SDCC housing department for their hard work and dedication and would ask people to be vigilant in taking action against anyone causing any anti-social behaviour or harm physical, mentally or otherwise to residents. I would ask the Garda in Clondalkin to keep an extra eye on the figures and to work with the Council when it comes to ASB”

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Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald TD was welcomed to Tallaght by Minister of State Brian Hayes TD. Minister Fitzgerald was in Tallaght to visit Dominics Community Centre Minister Hayes stated, “I was delighted that Minister Fitzgerald had the opportunity to visit

the centre and meet with some of the children who use this great facility. Ministers Fitzgerald visit was arranged following a visit three weeks ago by An Taoiseach who was greatly impressed by the facilities Dominics Community Centre have in place and gave a commitment on the day that Minister Fitzgerald

would attend.

Minister Hayes further stated, “During Minister Fitzgerald visit she learned of the plans the centre has to expand its current facilities and also of many activities the centre has in place.” Pictured are Minister Fitzgerald and Brian Hayes in Dominics Community Centre

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Hogan faIls to tuRn uP

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Clondalkin Sinn Féin Councillor Matthew McDonagh has said that “the failure of Minister for Environment Phil Hogan to turn up at last night’s event in the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel in Clondalkin demonstrates that he is

running scared of the people.”

The comments were made following an anti-property and anti-water tax protest at the hotel forced Minister Hogan to cancel the speaking

engagement.

Cllr McDonagh said “Local people from Clondalkin, Ballyfermot and other areas staged a peaceful protest at the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel in Clondalkin. We were objecting to the

presence of Phil Hogan and calling on the government to reverse the proposed property tax and water tax.”

“At the last Minute Minister Hogan decided not to attend the event. Clearly he was

unwilling to face local people and justify his plans to heap more pain and financial hardship on ordinary people.”

“His last minute cancellation is not only a victory for Sinn Féin the others and

protesting against his unjust policies last night. It was a victory for all those low and middle income families who simply have no more to give. ‘That Big Phil chose to run away from the public shows that he

doesn’t have the courage of his convictions to face the public. Sinn Féin will continue to campaign against Fine Gael and Labours unjust property and water taxes in the weeks and months ahead.”

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€70m eneRgy effIcIency fund establIsHed 8

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The Minister for Communications, Energy and natural Resources Pat Rabbitte TD announced that Government meeting

has his proposal to establish a €70 million Energy Efficiency Fund which will provide project lending for energy efficiency works

in the public and commercial sectors. The Energy Efficiency Fund will be separate from, and additional to, the grants-based Retrofit programme for private homes, which currently maintains more than 4,000 jobs.

“The Government has authorised €35 million in seed capital for the Fund, which will a similar leverage amount from the private sector” the Minister said. “We estimate that about €250 million in savings can be made in energy bills in the public sector alone. Around 675 jobs, direct and indirect, will be created for every €10 million expenditure.”

The Energy Efficiency Fund will finance two main types of project, in the public and commercial sector –

Illegal dumPIng fInes neaRly double

• Energy Performance Contracts, where funding is drawn down by an energy services company (ESCO) – a commercial business that designs and implements energy savings for clients, and • Direct lending to client companies.

“Separately, I will bring proposals to Cabinet later this year for the residential sector to transition from the Retrofit scheme, which pays grants after the event to those who can commit to the cost of upgrading their homes, to a new financing model “Pay as you Save” (PAYS). under PAYS, the homeowner will enjoy the same immediate benefits as Retrofit and will be able to finance their home improvements from on-going savings on their energy bills.”

in a statement to this newspaper, Cllr. Trevor Gilligan, said that “Last year saw over 6,000 tonnes of illegal dumping within the South Dublin Council area. I believe this has to do with the fact that more and more people cannot afford to privately pay for their bin charges. In some cases its between putting food on the table, having a roof over your head, or paying waste collection fees. Whilst I do not condone illegal dumping, however, the minister must allocate funds to help those who cannot afford to pay bin charges to commercial businesses.” “Between Jan – nov 2012 there was

1,100 on the spot fines in the South Dublin area, this is almost double the figure between the same time, Jan – nov 2011 of 600 on the spot fines. This is down to the council taking more action where illegal dumping occurs. This meant there was more fines paid in 2012 than in 2011 (almost 400 paid in 2012, 200 in 2011). Residents should make sure they get the best value for money from their bin company, always get three quotes before you choose any one company” Pictured is Cllr. Trevor Gilligan at an illegal dump in Palmerstown Wood

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couRts RefoRm must not slIP down PolItIcal agenda Your FREE Local Newspaper

Fine Gael Dublin Senator and solicitor, Catherine noone, has said that the reform of our courts system must not be allowed to slip down the political agenda. Senator noone said the comments

made by Chief Justice Susan Denham about delays in the Supreme Court highlight the huge backlogs in our legal system. “I know from my own professional experience the impact huge delays

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in court proceedings can have on members of the public. The challenge facing our courts system was brought into sharp focus earlier this week when the Chief Justice, Susan Denham, warned that the Supreme Court cannot accept any more emergency cases this term. “Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter TD, has committed to reforming

our court system, and I would urge him to drive this agenda forward Government. within The only way to address the delays being experienced in the Supreme Court and in our other courts, is to establish a new Civil Court of Appeal, which would deal with cases that don’t need to go to the Supreme Court. “Our Supreme Court can’t filter cases, and

as a result people can be waiting up to four years to have their cases heard. This is a completely unacceptable situation. In countries like the uS or the uK, Supreme Courts hear fewer than 100 cases a year because they only deal with cases of exceptional constitutional importance. “Justice delayed is

justice denied. I know Minister Shatter is committed to bringing forward legislation to reform our courts, but considering any changes will require the passage of a referendum, I would urge him to ensure legislation is drafted as soon as possible. “The proposals from Minister Shatter, which also include a new separate Family Court

structure, have the potential to achieve some of the most significant changes to our courts structures since 1924. The reform of our courts will benefit both the public and the taxpayer. I fully support the Minister’s intentions, and I hope can bring forward both legislation and a date for any necessary referendum as soon as possible.”

eu economIc foRecasts ReInfoRce need foR eu gRowtH & Jobs stRategy

The latest Eu economic forecasts released reinforce the urgent need for a more coordinated European growth and jobs strategy, Labour MEP Emer Costello has said. Ms Costello was responding to the European Commission's winter economic forecasts 2012- 2014, which predict 0.1% growth in the Eu and a contraction of -0.3% in the Eurozone, as well as Eu unemployment rising to from 11.4% in 2012 to 12.2% next year. "Europe needs a stronger growth and jobs strategy. The economic impact of coordinated European action to promote growth and jobs is much greater than the uncoordinated actions of 27 Member States. "The €120 billion Compact for Growth and Jobs agreed at the June 2012 European Summit must be implemented in full. In particular, the January decision by the European Investment Bank's governing board to increase the EIB's capital by €10 billion, which is estimated to leverage additional lending of €60 billion and additional investment of €180 billion by 2015 must now be translated into a concrete pan-European investment programme in infrastructural and in people to generate growth and jobs.

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“We also need to ensure that the Eu's budgetary framework for the 2014-2020 period - its 'Multiannual Financial Framework has the resources necessary to achieve the Eu's priorities, including the 75% employment target for 2020, and is focused on growth-enhancing priorities, especially innovation, R&D and education, and investments in people, not the priorities of the past. Ms Costello also pointed out that the Commission's forecasts for Ireland are more positive than for the EU as a whole. "The Commission estimates that economic growth in Ireland will pick up from 0.7% in 2012, to 1.1% this year, and to 2.2% in 2014. 2013 is also projected to be the year that Ireland returns to net job creation after five years of falling employment, with total employment estimated to rise by 0.1% this year and by 0.9% next year. “Europe does need to reduce public debt and deficits since sustainable growth and jobs will never be built on unsound public finances, but we do need to work for growth-friendly fiscal consolidation. This can be done through a coordinated Europe growth and jobs strategy.”


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€70m Investment to commence In June wHIcH wIll see 60% of tRaffIc by-PassIng newland's cRoss JunctIon Your FREE Local Newspaper

Fine Gael Dublin Mid West Deputy, Derek Keating, has said every effort will be made to minimise the impact on local residents as a result of the newlands Cross by-pass, the work on which is set to commence this summer. Deputy Keating was

contRact to be sIgned on 7tH maRcH

speaking following a local meeting last night that was organised by him and attended by an independent engineer from Leixlip, Mr. John Colgan, who was on hand to answer any technical questions. “After

30

years

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discussion, 10 years of planning and 5 years of seeking funding, South Dublin County Council, in conjunction with the national Roads Authority, is now about to sign a €70 million contract to have work commence on the newlands Cross by-pass in the first week of July. This will follow on from the contract being signed on 7th March. “Work on this project, for the development of the n7, will take about 21 months to reach. It will be one of the major construction projects undertaken in Dublin

Mid-West for some time. Currently more than 100,000 vehicles pass through the junction every day and newlands Cross has been flagged for construction, which will see it being by-passed by 60% of traffic coming onto that junction, for some time now. “Obviously, local residents have concerns, in terms of what the construction phase will mean for them in terms of their day to day living. I have received a commitment from South Dublin County Council that all three lanes on each side of the road will remain open

“I will also be setting up a Working Group to represent the residents of the immediate area to keep those who are anxious about this construction informed. It is vital that a direct communication pathway is established with South Dublin County Council, the Gardá– and the contractor to

unHCR is currently undertaking a research project and is looking for refugees from around the country to play an active role. We are hoping that people in the Dublin area will get involved and tell us

about their experience of integrating into local communities.

needs in national integration policies, practices and evaluation.

during the construction phase and that the contractor will be available to discuss the hours of construction, the impact of machinery in the area, noise, light and other environmental factors.

ensure that, when the work commences, a limited environmental impact will result. “This project is long overdue so I am delighted that it is now being progressed, as it will have a significant impact on local residents’ lives once completed. As soon as the contract is signed next month, I will host a number of information meetings to ensure that the construction phase will take the impact on local residents into consideration and that their concerns and fears can be allayed.”

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new deadlIne foR endIng long teRm Homelessness Your FREE Local Newspaper

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis has welcomed the setting by the Minister for Housing of a deadline to end long term homelessness and

rough sleeping. He made his comments following the announcement by Jan O'Sullivan that the deadline would be reset to 2016 given the

failure to live up to a previous commitments for the year 2010. Deputy Ellis said that “The target originally set at 2010 was achievable and many

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good steps were taken but the political will was not there in Fianna Fáil to see through project. Groups like Focus Ireland in 2011 called for the date to be reset to 2013. The government has now decided on 2016 as the date. This aim could be a lot closer to being achieved if proper focus was given to housing but I welcome this new deadline. “Focus Ireland believes from its research that there are roughly 5000 homeless people in this state. Many of these are under 18. “People who experience homelessness are more likely to have physical or mental health difficulties and many were formerly in care, all are in this situation because of a lack of appropriate accommodation to meet their needs. They are victims of a failure by our society.

“Much work is still to be done in order to end homelessness and the government will need to make serious strides in providing housing which is tailored to suit the varied needs of people coming out of homelessness. Funding has been cut for homelessness services and emergency accommodation is at breaking point with organisations working with the homeless operating at absolute capacity, this situation cannot continue.

“A new deadline is a good step but proper funding of services for homeless people, provision of aftercare for those leaving care or prison as well as the provision of permanent housing is what will end homelessness. These are all in the government’s power to do if they truly commit themselves to this new deadline.”

IRIsH aRtIsts need to be fRont and centRe at festIvals

Fine Gael Dublin Senator, Catherine noone, has said that a voluntary code of practice should be introduced for major venues, festival promoters and production companies to ensure Irish talent is front and centre alongside their foreign counterparts.

“I attended a performance by Lyric Opera Productions at and I was blown away by the depth of talent on display. It was truly magnificent and, more importantly, it was entirely Irish. It was mentioned to me afterwards, that many of the bigger venues and festivals in Ireland often overlook indigenous talent when it comes to opera. Based on the Lyric performance at the weekend, I can’t help but think we’re missing out.

“Consideration should be given to introducing a voluntary code of practice across arts bodies, venues and festivals, to make sure Irish talent is being promoted sufficiently. It is worth asking the question; are Irish acts being given enough support in the rush to attract international talent to these shores?

“We need to come up with new ways to boost the level of Irish talent on display.”

to adveRtIse In any of ouR PublIcatIons tel: 01 451 3822 oR vIsIt ouR websIte on www.newsgroup.ie

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breathnach Your FREE Local Newspaper

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18

ageIng stRategy on tHe cusP of delIveRy Your FREE Local Newspaper

Older & Bolder has met with Minister Kathleen Lynch who told them that the national Positive Ageing Strategy will be published in the coming weeks. Older & Bolder Director, Patricia Conboy said, “Older & Bolder welcomes the imminent publication of the national Positive Ageing Strategy. Minister Kathleen Lynch informed us that the strategy has

been signed off by the Cabinet Committee on Social Policy. It is now en route to Government and we anticipate that it will be published in the coming weeks”. Patricia Conboy continued, “The imminent production of the strategy is good news. Older & Bolder with the support of older people around the country have campaigned for six long years for the publication of a

The Legal Column

alcohol or undetected.

In this month’s edition, readers write in about topical employment and consumer issues. Readers are reminded to send their queries to Romaine Scally at Romaine Scally and Co Solicitors, Main Street, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Romaine will try to fit in as many replies as possible, space permitting. If your answer does not appear this month it may appear in the following edition. Q. I was accused of being under the influence of alcohol at work recently and was sent home for the rest of the day. I was paid but I want to know if my employers had the right to do that.

A. The answer to this question will depend on whether the Employer has a drugs and alcohol policy in place. You will need to read the terms of any contract you have to know the answer to this. You also don’t say what sort of work you do which may be a factor. If there is a drug and alcohol policy in place, it may allow for testing based on a 'reasonable suspicion', for drugs and or alcohol. It would be unusual for any policy to automatically suspend an employee even on full pay without some testing procedure. However, it may well be that the Employer made the decision based on reasonable suspicion only. This could place an Employer in a difficult position as any effects of drugs and alcohol will of course wear off which may be consistent with the Employee's account. Few Employers have an alcohol and drug testing policy but it is planned to introduce an amendment to the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005, which will regulate such testing. As you can imagine, in certain jobs, there are considerable implications for all staff if an

national Positive Ageing Strategy. This campaign has been sustained through two Programmes for Government and over the tenure of three Ministers for Older People. We commend Minister Lynch for bringing energy and impetus to the delivery of this long awaited strategy”. Conboy concluded, “The Patricia publication of the national Positive Ageing

drug

problem

goes

You do not say if there is to be any follow up to your suspension. You should enquire, as you are entitled to know precisely the nature of the complaint made against you and you must be informed as to your rights with regard to the procedure to follow. It is essential that the employer obtain the employee's response to the allegations before making a decision as to whether there is sufficient evidence to determine that misconduct has occurred. The Employer must firstly put the allegation to the Employee that he or she was under the influence of alcohol in the workplace together with any evidence such as any test result, smell, erratic behaviour or witnesses to alcohol consumption. Remember too that Employers have to be aware that testing only provides evidence of alcohol or drugs, rather than proof of impairment while at work. Whether or not the Employer has a 'zero tolerance' policy', or whether a limited presence of alcohol is acceptable may also be relevant in this regard. You should certainly pursue the matter further with your Employer. Q. I have been selected for Redundancy at work and feel very badly about it. Personally I don’t feel that I have been fairly picked. Is there anything I can do?

A. unfortunately there is a lot of Redundancy about at the moment and we just cant get away from that. However, some employers undoubtedly avail of these difficult times to shed difficult or poor performing staff by dismissing them and claiming that their post was 'redundant'. The Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT) is wise to this and will scrutinize each situation very carefully in contested redundancy claims. There are certain questions which should be asked of your employer before you consider what to do next. Was any consideration given to the possibility of redeploying you to another role within the company which you would be in a position to fulfill? If you have already left, has anyone with similar experience been employed by the company? Did you make any proposal to the company as to how your job could be retained? If so was any consideration given to these proposals? Employers have a duty to try to preserve positions.

It is wise for an employer to set up a meeting with the employee, being chosen for redundancy, to discuss alternative roles with him or her. We are certainly living in very troubled times and it is important for employees to also do their best to keep their job by being as flexible as possible in their role thus not making themselves an obvious target for redundancy if some jobs are being retained. unfortunately, in many cases now it is patently obvious that the jobs are no longer viable through no fault whatsoever of the employee. This applies where orders are not being repeated thus starving a business of income or, lack of consumer spending has cut off vital cash flow to a business. However, if you feel that you have been unfairly selected, then you should bring a case to the EAT who will determine the issue for you and make an award of compensation if they find that you have been unfairly selected for redundancy. needless to say, if you have not yet left your employment, you would be wise to make representations first to your employer as to how you feel your job could be retained.

In these recessionary times readers are naturally concerned about their consumer rights and what to do in a crisis. Hopefully readers will find these answers helpful in either avoiding a problem in the future or sorting one out now.

Q. My fiancée and I paid a deposit to a hotel for our wedding reception. we have just received notification that the hotel is about to close down and will not be able to honour their commitment to us. what can we do?

A. unfortunately, consumer rights are limited when a business closes down. This is because the consumers contract is with the trader, and once the business passes into possession of a liquidator, consumer rights no longer apply. usually, companies that have closed down owe money to several different sources. The law divides these creditors into three groups. Priority is given to 'secured creditors', such as banks and other lending institutions, next to be paid are 'preferential creditors', such as

Strategy will be very important. Older people have told us in repeated consultations that the right kind of planning, information and supports make the crucial difference between independence and dependence for older people. An effective national Positive Ageing Strategy has the potential to improve older people’s quality of life”.

by Romaine Scally

the Revenue and employees of the company. Consumers fall into the third group 'unsecured creditors', which are last to be paid. In many cases there is no money left at this stage and the unsecured creditors get nothing.

You may have a couple of options. If you paid by credit card, your credit card company may be able to stop payment, or do a 'chargeback', reversing the payment. If you have wedding insurance you may be able to make a claim for the lost deposit. If the hotel is part of a larger chain, you may be able to claim the deposit back from the larger hotel group. Otherwise contact the Liquidator as soon as possible (details will be on the hotel website or available from the Companies Registration Office). You will need to make a claim in writing to the Liquidator in order to be added to the list of creditors.

Q. I paid a deposit on a new kitchen table due to be delivered in 4-6 weeks. Now, three months on there's no sign of it and I want my money back. what are my rights?

A. If a furniture company has promised you a certain delivery period, you are entitled to expect that they will deliver your new kitchen table within this time. If they fail to deliver your purchase within that length of time, they may have broken their contract with you, and if so, you are entitled to your deposit back. Before complaining, check the written terms and conditions of your contract to see if there are any provisions dealing specifically with delays. Then, contact the suppliers with your complaint, and give them the chance to agree a new, final delivery time that is acceptable to you. If they refuse to do this, or if they agree and your table still doesn't arrive, write to them cancelling your purchase and asking for your deposit back. If they refuse to return your deposit, you may wish to bring a case to the Small Claims Court. If you do this, make sure to keep all your paperwork, as you will need it for your claim.

romAine sCAlly & Co, soliCiTors operate a FREE LEGAL ADVICE CLINIC on the second Wednesd ay from 2.00pm until 6.00p of every month m at in Main Street, Tallaght, their offices Dublin 24. NEXT CLINIC: WED. 13TH MARCH. No Appointment is ne We look forward to answ cessary. 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: legal@scally.ie


gRIffItH college law week

Dublin South West representative Seán Crowe TD challenged the government’s efforts to force frontline workers to acquiesce to substantial cuts in wages and in their terms and conditions of employment.

Griffith College held the inaugural Law Week at its South Circular Road campus in Dublin from 12th – 14th February. More than 50 students from around the country participated in the programme which aims to give secondary school students a taste of a day in the life of a law student. Head of the law faculty at Griffith College, Siobhan Leonard, said of Law Week; “We are delighted to host this inaugural event at Griffith College Dublin. Studying as a third level student is so different to the student experience at second level. This is particularly evident when dealing with subject areas, such as law, which are not taught as part of the Leaving Cert curriculum. We

hope that Law Week will give students a flavour of what law can offer, both as a studying experience and as a career, to help students to make informed decisions when deciding the direction of their future careers.” Activities during Law Week included career talks, attending law lectures with undergraduate students and a ‘moot court’ experience. For further information at Griffith College, please visit www.gcd.ie. Pictured are three students from Caritas College, Ballyfermot; (L-R) Erica Foster, Weronika NoWall and Shauna Shelly

19

back off fRontlIne woRkeRs wages

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Crowe said he wholeheartedly supported the demand that the Government “back off frontline workers and start looking to the top of the public sector to reduce their pay and pension bill.” The Tallaght based Deputy speaking after a huge gathering of Public Sector workers in Basketball Arena in Tallaght outlined the difficulties and hardship that are facing staff on a daily basis. Deputy Seán Crowe said: “From the begining of negotiations on a successor to the Croke Park agreement, the government has consistently warned of compulsory redundancies in the public sector. It then threatened more cuts including that of core pay. “ We know from the government’s own figures that low and middle income public sector workers have seen their pay significantly reduced between pay cuts and the Fianna Fáil/ Green Party pension levy. “There are now two and sometimes three tiers of pay for workers doing exactly the same job. new graduate teachers and nurses are being asked to take huge cuts in basic pay and quite rightly have highlighted this gross inequality. Sadly this is the kind of inequity that the current government is trying to replicate right across the public service despite the rhetoric of labour ministers. “Public sector workers are also generally working harder, longer and for less money – particularly those at the frontline who have seen their numbers

depleted over the last two years. “By contrast those at the top have been protected. Bonanza pay and pensions remain in place. And the government still without any embarrassment breaks its own pay cap for its well-paid special advisors. “The government needs to back off frontline workers and start looking to the top of the public sector to reduce the pay and pension bill. “It needs to stop disproportionately targeting frontline workers who have already contributed so much for more cuts and move to tackle the gold plated pensions and high pay still enjoyed by current and former Taoisigh, Ministers and senior civil servants. “Attacking pay from the bottom up is not a reforming measure. It’s the cowards option. “Senior managers and office holders including the Taoiseach are paid more than their European counterparts. On taking up office the French Presidency Francois Holland cut his own pay by 30%. By contrast on entering government the Taoiseach Enda Kenny reduced his lavish salary by a mere 6%. “The protection afforded to high rollers in the public sector contrasts starkly with the plans of the government to slash the wages of frontline workers. “In the Taoiseach’s own Department two of the Special Advisors are paid €168,000 while in the Department of Social protection the Special advisor to Joan Burton receives €127,000. “This government who promised radical reform cannot with any credibility call for cuts to pay in these negotiations while it continues to protect the lavish pay and pension pots of ministers and senior civil servants.”

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”


20

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gIve uP clotHes foR good

21

oveR tHRee yeaRs of nama and Just 179 Homes delIveRed foR socIal HousIng

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Pictured at the launch of fourth Enable Ireland’s Give Up Clothes for Good charity initiative are TV3’s Glenda Gilson, Sybil Mulcahy and Anna Daly, together with Isabelle Burke (aged 4) from the Enable Ireland Sandymount Centre. Give Up Clothes for Good is Ireland’s biggest clothes drive and aims to raise funds for Enable Ireland’s vital services for children with disabilities across the country by asking the public to drop their unwanted clothing, accessories and household items to any TK Maxx store nationwide from today until the 18th of March. For more information, visit www.tkmaxx.ie or find them on Facebook. (Picture Andres Poveda)

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Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has described progress on social housing from nAMA properties as very disappointing. He made his comments in response to a parliamentary question which found that just 179 homes have been delivered for social housing despite nAMA being in existence since late 2009 and its many commitments to providing a social dividend. Deputy Ellis continued “This just isn't good enough. I welcomed the renewed commitment by nAMA last year to provide 3,949 units for use for social housing but so little has been

delivered in a time when housing waiting lists are bursting at the seams and people are finding it harder to keep their home or to afford spiralling rents.

“The social lease system pursued by the government is a lucrative one for developers within nAMA who will have their properties’ rents hassle free and will be returned their properties once the lease ends. These are developers who have been bailed out by the people already and are being fed by nAMA but have repaid nothing in the way of social dividend. “Thousands of nAMA units which could be

new homes for people who have been waiting years are lying idle. The Minister for Housing and the department need to get tough with developers and nAMA and to ensure this is delivered on soon. We cannot let another year go by where nAMA houses only a handful of people. We have waited long enough. “The minister must also

pave the way to allow local authorities to take over unfinished estates which have no bond and are in the control of a financial institution or nAMA so that these sites can be completed and people can finally be housed. This is all about the political will to provide much needed housing, either the government has it or it doesn’t.”

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tel: 01 451 3822

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How to PRevent a buRglaR fRom enteRIng youR Home 22

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by ciarán o’connell director burglarybusters

Recent information tells us that Home Burglary is now the only crime that is increasing in Ireland and there are approx 76 burglaries occurring in Ireland each day. While intruder alarms are deterrents, we now know that they do not stop thieves from entering a building. The increased activity of cutting telephone wires to prevent home security surveillance by phone watch companies is now making life more difficult for many concerned home owners.

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:

Two of every three burglaries in Ireland are through a front, back or sliding patio door. The impact of trauma for those present (particularly when alone) in the home when this occurs is totally underestimated and this conclusion is confirmed by crime victim support groups nationwide. 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.

Kicking in timber 4. doors. 5. Breaking glass on the side door panels. Prising open or 6. 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. Cutting and then 9. removing the glass from the windows. The solutions

• You must remember that although you may have a multi-locking system in your door, when the thief breaks the euro cylinder lock he will automatically gain entry. Have your locks checked and if they need replacing, ensure you install

gaIn Peace of mInd wItH a fRee secuRIty suRvey

euro cylinder locks meeting a high accredited standard such as Secured by Design.

The new type of • 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 comes with a twelve point locking system and secure euro What many cylinders. 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 • 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.

Does this Zentry High Security Door look any different to a traditional front door?

• 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

• Glass can be reinforced on the inside by applying a special Zentry High-Security Window Film that can be found on the windows of most foreign embassies in Dublin, where it is used for security purposes. This highly acclaimed product stops glass from shattering at the time of impact and negates the burglar’s efforts. When installed the film is virtually invisible and still enables you to clean the windows as normal. See Zentry Security Window Film Video on Windows page at www.burglarybusters.ie Alternatively, glass or windows can be replaced by windows containing a special laminated glass finish on the outside and this prevents entry. Again, it is important to understand that when you are replacing windows you can gain the correct thermal efficiency from glass and at the same time achieve a much higher level

Zentry Retracable Security Grille concealed by blinds. of security by ensuring you install the most appropriate product.

• Much anxiety arises for people living alone and particularly when they are in bed. Much of this is to do 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 occurring.

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 info@burglarybusters.ie


bIll to establIsH new ‘RePublIc day’ natIonal HolIday launcHed

23

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Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh has published the Public Holidays (Lá na Poblachta) Bill 2013 which seeks to establish a new national holiday to mark the sacrifice of men and women who gave their lives in pursuit of an independent Irish Republic.

The holiday would be on April 24, the anniversary of the reading of the proclamation of Ireland outside the GPO by Padraig Pearse in 1916, and would involve events in each county to raise awareness and understanding of the ideals contained in the key

revolutionary documents and events leading to the declaration of the Irish Republic at the GPO on Monday 24th April 1916.

Speaking as he published the bill at Leinster House today Deputy Ó Snodaigh said “Many nations

celebrate the birth of their nation be it the date of a major battle that won independence from a colonial force or a date when their nation was proclaimed to the world. “Many nations who have yet to win their independence also have national holidays to mark a date when their nation was declared. “Ireland should be no different. And while we have yet to secure a fully independent republic we should not allow that to stop us from celebrating the

proclamation of our nation and remembering all those who died in pursuit of our independence. “Ireland currently has nine annual bank holidays. The European average is eleven. So this bill would bring us closer to the Eu average as was called for by Rúairí Quinn in 2006. “The bill calls for events in every county in Ireland annually not only to celebrate our history but also to raise awareness and understanding of the ideals contained in the key

revolutionary documents and events leading to the declaration of the Irish Republic at the GPO on Monday 24th April 1916.

“It is vitally important, particularly in the run up to the centenary of the rising, that we put in place measures to ensure that future generations are aware of and fully understand the ideals of those who fought for our Irish Republic. I hope the other parties will support this bill.”

numbeR of PatIents on tRolleys In tallagHt falls by 74%

Aengus Ó Snodaigh speaking to media at Leinster House where he published the Public Holidays (Lá Na Poblachta) Bill 2013.

Local Fine Gael TD and Minister of State, Brian Hayes has today (Monday) confirmed that the number of patients on trolleys in Tallaght Hospital has reduced by 74%. The figures were compiled by the InMO and provided to Minister Hayes by Minister Reilly. Minister Hayes stated, “In January of this year 195 patients were counted on a

trolley in Tallaght Hospital. In January 2011 772 patients were counted. This is a reduction of 74% since the Government came into office. Similarly, the number of people waiting on a bed throughout the year has reduced by some 60%. At the end of 2012, 1,903 patients were counted as been on a trolley compared to 4,773 in 2011.”


24

tallagHt Pet owneRs InvIted to tuRn Pets Into maxI zoo euRo calendaR staRs

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The Maxi Zoo pet store in Tallaght has announced details of a unique competition which gives local pet owners an opportunity to turn their pet into a national and international star.

The store is inviting local pet owners to submit photos of their through a Facebook pet competition which is designed to find the pets who will become the face of the company’s Euro Calendar Stars 2014.

Maxi Zoo intends to publish three calendars with one each for dogs, cats and other animals. One month in each calendar will be dedicated to the best photo of a pet from Ireland.

The judges will also select the best summer and best winter photos from all of the entries submitted for inclusion in each of the three calendars.

The free calendars will be available for customers to

collect later this year from the 15 Maxi Zoo stores across Ireland and from all other stores in Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, France, Belgium, Denmark, Poland and Hungry.

The lucky Irish pet owners whose pet photo is chosen for inclusion in each calendar will also receive a €100 gift voucher from their local Maxi Zoo store.

Pet owners in Tallaght can enter the competition anytime up to Sunday, March 3rd next by visiting www.facebook.com/maxizooirel and.

Visitors to the page will be invited to create an animal album using a Facebook app and to upload three photos of their pet. Maxi Zoo fans across Europe can vote for their favourite animal photo from any country. An international judging panel will

select the winning dog, cat and other animal photos from the most popular photos.

“This is a fabulous opportunity for pet owners to turn their pet into a European Calendar Star. Pets make great photos and pet owners in Tallaght have no excuse for not joining the fun and sharing their photos with other pet lovers,” said Tony Cross, Managing Director of Maxi Zoo Ireland.

“We are looking for the three best photos of your pet in a natural environment. The more creativity and originality the photo shows the better your chances of winning and making your pet an international star,” he added.

Customers entering the competition are advised to submit photos taken with a digital camera rather than a phone and to ensure that the quality settings are 300dpi.

to adveRtIse In any of ouR PublIcatIons

tel: 01 451 3822

nItelInk seRvIce cut In yeaR of tHe ‘gatHeRIng’ makes way foR yeaR of ‘tHe guRRIeR’

Councillor Éamonn Walsh (Tallaght Central) (FF) South Dublin County Council has accused Bus Átha Cliath of deliberately running down the nitelink service.

The nitelink which has been operating for nearly 20 years may not be a revenue spinner for Bus Átha Cliath but it has been an important resource for those seeking to enjoy a night out at reasonable expense rather than having to spend 4-5 times that amount on a taxi fare home. This prohibitive expense will discourage people from socialising in the city thereby creating a ’no go’ area once again when we are supposed to be trying to revitalise the city by attracting people into it this being the year of ‘the Gathering.’ Walsh says that a serious public order issue has arisen with what he calls the ‘daft ‘ times of the three buses at 12.00, 2am and 4am. Walsh says ‘You’re either rushing your drink to get the midnight bus, leaving the night club before it ends to catch the 2am bus, or trying to kill time before the 4am bus arrives. This is not a public service and the undoubted inevitable drop in numbers as potential passengers who no longer want to hang around town will lead to Bus Átha Cliath’s abandonment of the service,

ultimately.’

Walsh says ‘The brainless move of the stop from Townsend Street where there was little or no trouble for years, to D’Olier Street where it is chaotic beside a number of nightclubs and pubs, has been a disastrous move and will deter people coming into town because of the massive public order problems it is causing’. Councillor Walsh says ‘having used the service over the years, the recent terminus change has led me to witness, sometimes, three fights in a night, awaiting the bus. This combined with the long interval of two hours between each bus has, unfortunately, led me to believe that it is currently unsafe to travel the nitelink’.

In a recession, people cannot afford the luxury of spending €20-€40 on taxi fares to Greenhills, Tallaght, Templeogue or Walkinstown and if Ministers Varadkar and Shatter want ‘the Gathering’ to succeed and want to stop Dubliners having to run the gauntlet of aggressive drunks getting in their way on their way home, then they should order Bus Átha Cliath to restore the hourly service, move the terminus back to where it belongs or otherwise make way for other operators to run the nitelink, properly.’

lookIng afteR youR PRoPeRty

‘WE HAVE SEEn a sharp increase in enquiries from concerned home owners and business people looking to protect their families and property’, says Managing Director of Hi-Tech Security Kevin Gavin. “We are also working closely with “at –risk” individuals associated with industries such as jewellers, banks and post offices who would appear to be specifically targeted in recent months. Statistics have shown in the 12 months up to the end of the first quarter of 2012 there were 25,904 burglaries and 77,828 thefts and related offences such as handling stolen goods: an increase of 8.3 per cent over the previous year. The onset of recession carries with it the growing threat of burglary and theft: something we are seeing as evident these days especially with 3.2 per

cent increase in burglaries in the this quarter of 2011 culminating in a total of 27,494 reported burglary offences for 2011.

Hi-Tech Security has seen too many instances of people not using their security systems where fitted or not having them in proper working order. Kevin Gavin continues: “There are a number of ways to deter a burglar from entering your home or premises.” You can log on to www.hitechsecurity.ie to find some hints and tips.

You can contact Hi-Tech Security on 01-4580185 087- 565261 083-3556609 or info@hitechsecurity.ie for a free security consultation and advice on how to better secure your home or business.


oPen day foR Plc and adult couRses Your FREE Local Newspaper

25

collInstown PaRk communIty college

An Open Day will be held in Collinstown Park Community College on Thursday 7th March 2013 from 9.30am – 1.30pm and from 7.00pm – 8.30pm for all those interested in attending a full or part-time Adult / Further Education or Post Leaving Certificate course.

Park Collinstown Community College is located on the neilstown Road in Clondalkin Rowlagh, about five minutes from the Liffey Valley Shopping Centre. Courses are available on a full-time and part-time basis and are open to school leavers and mature students. The college particularly welcomes adults who have left school some time ago and who wish to increase their skills and gain a

qualification.

Courses are available in Early Childhood Care and Education, Business Administration, Payroll and Bookkeeping, PC Maintenance & IT Service Technician, network Technologies, and Hairdressing Beauty, Youth Work, Health Care Support, nursing Studies, ECDL, Return to Learning/ General Studies, English for Speakers of other Languages, Special Classroom needs Assistant, After School Support Skills, Beauty Therapy or Reception Skills. There are a number of supports available to adults on Social Protection payments who wish to return to education including the Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme VTOS and Back to

Education Allowance (BTEA). These schemes allow eligible adults return to full time education without losing their benefits. Eligible students do not pay course fees and receive other supports to cover the costs involved in returning to education. All of our part-time courses are run under the Back to Education Initiative (BTEI).

Part time courses may be provided free of charge to eligible students in receipt of Protection Social payments/Medical Card holders or early school leavers.

Childcare assistance may be available on a limited basis for certain eligible students under BTEI, VTOS/BTEA and the CCS Scheme.

Full time courses give students the opportunity to gain a FETAC Major Award over one year. Many of our past students have found employment in their chosen area.

early school leavers who would like to gain a qualification. The Open Day on the 7th of March will give all those with an

interested in studying For more info at Collinstown Park rmation visit Community College a chance to find out more www.collinstownpark.ie about individual course or contact the school at content and talk to the 01 4572300. course Tutors.

Students who have completed a FETAC Level 5 course successfully may use their results to apply for a place on some courses in Institutes of Technology and universities through the Links Scheme.

Part time courses offer a more flexible option to students, allowing them achieve a specific qualification such as ECDL, or a FETAC Component certificate in one year or to complete a FETAC Major Certificate over a longer period. Many of these courses are particularly suitable for

Collinstown Park Community College offers a broad range of courses including Business Administration

COLLINSTOwN PARk COMMUNITY COLLEGE Rowlagh, Clondalkin, Dublin 22 www.collinstownpark.ie

OPEN DAY - ADULT AND FURTHER EDUCATION FULL AND PART TIME COURSES

DATE : THURSDAY 7th MARCH 2013 TIME : 9.30am - 1.30pm & 7.00pm – 8.30pm

• Early Childhood Care and Education FETAC Level 5 • Business Administration FETAC Level 5 • Payroll and Computerised Bookkeeping FETAC Level 5 • PC Maintenance & IT Service Technician CompTIA A+ and FETAC • Level 5 • Hairdressing with Beauty Care FETAC Level 5 • Youth Work FETAC Level 5 • Health Care Support FETAC Level 5 • nursing Studies FETAC Level 5

• Special needs Assistant FETAC Level 5 • After School Support Skills FETAC Level 5 • Beauty Therapy FETAC Level 5 • Reception Skills FETAC Level 5 • ECDL • network Technologies CCnA & FETAC Level 6 • Return to Learning/ General Studies FETAC Level 3/4 • English for Speakers of other Languages FETAC LEVEL 4/5

FOR FURTHER DETAILS SEE OUR wEBSITE :

www.collinstownpark.ie Buses 40 / 76 / 239

STUDENTS

The college is only five minutes from the Liffey Valley Shopping Centre and the M50

wHO ARE IN RECEIPT OF

SOCIAL PROTECTION

PAYMENTS MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR

VTOS/BTEA OR BTEI


26

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calls foR scHools to ‘sPRIng’ Into gReenwave 27

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Discover Science & Engineering is calling for all primary schools in Dublin to get involved with Greenwave 2013. Greenwave is a citizen science project which sees primary students observe and track the arrival of spring as it moves across the country. Greenwave is also step one of the Discover Primary Science and Maths, Awards of Science & Maths Excellence. Last year, 73 Dublin schools took part in the Greenwave project.

Between the months of February and May, students are asked to log their sightings of six species; frog, swallow, horse-chestnut, primrose, hawthorn and ash, in addition to measuring and recording wind speed, rainfall and temperature. The results are recorded on www.greenwave.ie in order to monitor and map the arrival of spring. Last year 471 Irish primary schools took part in the Greenwave project, submitting 1338 official records of common species and 745 weather

observations. Speaking at the launch of Greenwave 2013, Minister for Research and Innovation Sean Sherlock, T.D., said: “Educating children at an early age in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is vital if we are to progress and maintain sustainable growth of Ireland’s economy. The Greenwave initiative creates an opportunity for children to engage with science in an interesting, fun and hands-on way, allowing us to teach our children to appreciate the significance of STEM subjects from a young age.”

By taking part in the Greenwave project, schools will have completed part of Step one of the Discover Primary Science and Maths, Awards of Science & Maths Excellence. Primary schools can now register their application for their Awards of Science & Maths Excellence on www.primaryscience.ie.

Minister for Research and Innovation at the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, Sean Sherlock T.D. with Izzie and Jennifer Dowling

oveR €1mIllIon foR local smaRteR tRavel PRoJects

Local TD and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, has welcomed the national Transport Authority’s allocation of €1,185,000 to South Dublin County Council for smarter travel projects in 2013.

“This funding will be crucial in updating and enhancing travel routes throughout Clondalkin and Lucan. From safer pedestrian access to schools, more bicycle stands throughout the area and traffic management reviews, this funding will allow the Council to make our towns safer and more accessible,” said Fitzgerald. The national Transport Authority (nTA) have awarded

funding to projects that improve existing travel options as well providing funding to develop links between pedestrian, cycling and public transport options. Projects include pedestrian links to schools, traffic management improvements to Lucan and Clondalkin villages, better cycling and pedestrian facilities to Liffey Valley around the n4, pedestrian access and safety at Avoca in Rathcoole and the design of a route into Grange Castle via nangor Road.

“Coláiste Chillian has been waiting a long time for a footpath to the school and commuters have contacted me regarding pedestrian access to the Red Cow Luas stop. Parking in Lucan Village has also been an issue for residents

and I am glad that €100,000 is being allocated to improve traffic management in the village, with an emphasis to developing a parking strategy. Clondalkin Village will also be allocated the same amount for a review of traffic management including parking, cycling, bus and pedestrian access.

“not only will this funding give residents more travel options, but it will also help visitor access to local business in our villages and at specific projects around the Grange Castle area and at Avoca in Rathcoole. I look forward to seeing how this improves our villages in the year ahead," concluded Fitzgerald.

oveR 30 yeaRs exPeRIence

“from start to finish, we take care of everything”


28

sIx comPanIes In soutH west dublIn wIn awaRds at cItywest sHow

Six companies located in South West Dublin were among the award winners at the Hardware DIY Home and Garden Trade Show at the Citywest Exhibition Centre, Dublin on 17th /18th February.

Dulux Paints, whose Dublin office is in South City Business Park, won the Best Hardware and DIY product award for its Pollycell Polyfila Spray. Also in the Hardware and DIY category B&G from Greenhills Road was highly commended for its SOS Flood Bags, while Henkel Loctite, Tallaght Business Park won a commended award for its Solvite liquid wallpaper paste. DS Supplies, Rathcoole won a similar award for the Retrogrip anti-slip decking inserts. In the best Home

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Product category Rhino Distribution, naas Road Business Park won the top award for the Jaws refillable household cleaning product.

There was a strong sense of optimism among the many builders merchants and hardware retailers who attended at the Hardware DIY Home and Garden Trade Show.

Jim Copeland, Chief Executive of Hardware Association Ireland (HAI), organisers of the show, said that the number of visitors were 20% up on the last show in 2011. Over 120 exhibitors with in excess of 500 company brands took part in what is considered to be the key trade show event for the hardware industry in

fRee PeRsonalIty PRofIle wItH bookIngs foR mensa Iq test

Mensa are inviting the people of Dublin to discover their IQ score at a Mensa IQ test session. Everyone who achieves an IQ score within the top two per cent of the population will be invited to join Mensa. Mensa are also currently offering a FREE personality profile to anyone who books for a Mensa IQ Test. new members would join over 110,000 members of The High IQ Society based around the world; with 22,000 Mensans based in the British Isles. Those interested in finding out their IQ score can attend a Mensa supervised IQ test session on Saturday 23 March (1.45pm) at St Conleth’s College for just €25.80.

To reserve a place on the test you can book online by visiting the IQ Test section of the Mensa website at www.mensa.org.uk. Alternatively you can contact Helen Oliver on +44(0)1902 772 771 (option 1) or email bookatest@mensa.org.uk for more information. More information about Mensa and IQ testing can also be found via the Mensa website at www.mensa.org.uk.

Chris Tyler, Chairman of British Mensa, says “If you are intrigued by IQ and want to discover your potential a Mensa IQ test is the perfect place to find out. Knowing your IQ score is also useful when applying for university or a job; it can give you an advantage over other candidates.’

Mensa currently has 1,050 members in Ireland region and 66 members in Dublin. The society welcomes people from all walks of life, with the objective of enjoying each other’s company and participating in a range of social and cultural activities. There is an excellent events programme exclusively for Mensa members including intellectual talks and themed days. Members of Mensa also receive a monthly magazine and newsletter.

Ireland. Speaking at the opening ceremony Paddy Kelly, President, HAI said: “Our members are experiencing a marketplace unlike anything they would have experienced previously. But there are grounds for optimism. We as an industry have invested in modern outlets and product assortment, while retaining our uniquely Irish way of doing business with friendliness and a personal approach. We must continue to do everything we can to make the experience of a customer one which will encourage them to return again and again.” The HAI is the national association representing the hardware/DIY sector. It represents over 600 firms.

From family run businesses to publicly quoted companies,

HAI members serve their local communities competitively through over

780 outlets, providing careers for over 20,000 people across Ireland.

new data HIgHlIgHts cRItIcal ImPoRtance of socIal PRotectIon In ReducIng PoveRty

Pictured here is Dolores Farrell, Brand Manager, Dulux Paints with Paddy Kelly, President, Hardware Association Ireland.

The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton TD, has welcomed the publication of the Survey on Income and Living Conditions 2011 by the Central Statistics Office. Minister Burton said: “The new data reveals the continuing impact of the economic crisis on household income and living standards in 2011, but also underlines the crucial importance of social welfare in protecting the most vulnerable.”

The Minister welcomed the clarification by the CSO of the 2010 data on income inequality in Ireland, which shows that the impact of the crisis has not worsened income inequality. The key indicators of income inequality – which measure the gap in income between the most well-off and least well-off in society – are exactly the same in 2011 as in 2007, before the crisis.

The Minister noted in particular the 2011 rate of consistent poverty of 6.9%, which is the basis for the national social target for poverty reduction. “Last year, the Government re-affirmed its commitment to reduce consistent poverty from 6.3 per cent in 2010 to 4 per cent by 2016 and 2 per cent or less by 2020. Today’s figures show the importance of the target, the need to address the heavy burden of poverty carried by certain social groups and the challenge for Government and society in meeting the target.”

The Minister said a positive finding from the report is the key role of social transfers in reducing the at-risk-of poverty rate from 51 per cent (before social transfers) to 16 per cent after social transfers. This represents a poverty reduction effect of 60 per cent. Compared to other Eu countries, Ireland’s system of social transfers is the most effective in reducing poverty and is far superior to that of other countries most affected by the crisis (Estonia, Greece, Portugal, Spain and Britain). In 2011, the average poverty reduction effect of social transfers in these countries was 29 per cent, just half the Irish performance. Minister Burton said: “I have been very conscious of how crucial our welfare expenditure has been in protecting the most vulnerable and minimising poverty during the economic crisis. This is precisely why I protected weekly welfare payment rates in Budgets 2012 and 2013.

“The high rate of unemployment is clearly having a negative impact on poverty. Last year, my Department published a new ESRI study which showed that Ireland has a particularly severe structural problem of jobless households, which account for 23 per cent of the population aged 0 to 59 years. This problem dates back to before the crisis began, and was made worse with the rise in unemployment. To address this structural problem, we are going to set a new sub-target for reducing

poverty in jobless households.”

The Government is strongly pursuing active labour market policies through the establishment of Intreo – the one-stop shop employment support service for jobseekers - and the increased provision of training and childcare places in Budget 2013.

Minister Burton said: “My Department is spending €20.257 billion in 2013 accounting for almost 39% per cent of current Government expenditure. The services provided by my Department impact on the lives of almost every person in the State.

Some 1.35 million people each week receive a social welfare payment and, when qualified adults and children are included, almost 1.54 million people in all benefit from weekly payments. In addition, we pay Child Benefit to some 609,000 families in respect of over 1.16 million children each month.”

Minister Burton concluded: “The Government is committed to ensuring that the least well off in society are protected from the social impact of the crisis and are enabled to benefit from the economic recovery and new employment opportunities. It is clear that the welfare system continues to be very effective in bolstering low incomes and reducing the risk of poverty.”


breathnach’s eile

29

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st dominic’s shopping centre

Also see in store for all your Saint Patrick’s Day decorations From €1.00

breathnach’s eile, st. dominic s.c., millbrook lawns, tallaght, dublin 24


30

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novenas novenas novenas novenas

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. E.F.

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. Ann.

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. P.B.

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.O’B.

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. M.M. & J.

UNFAILING NOVENA to the Holy Spirit. O 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 as You confirm once again that I never want to be seperated from you even in spite of all material illusions. I wish to be with 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. M.M. & J.

THANkSGIVING St Jude novena. May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved and preserved throughout 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. M.M. & J.

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.

Ireland can veto any reduction in MEP seats

eu needs a socIal Investment Pact

Speaking at the launch of the Eu's new 'Social Investment' strategy in the European Parliament's Social Affairs Committee, Dublin Labour MEP, Emer Costello, said the Eu needs to agree a binding 'Social Investment Pact', setting specific targets, backed up by Eu resources, for investments in people, if it is to meet the ambitious employment, anti-poverty and education objectives of the Europe 2020 strategy.

"I welcome the new European Social Investment strategy presented by the Social Affairs Commissioner, Lazslo Andor, especially the draft recommendation on child poverty, which I hope will be approved by the Council very soon. Countries that pursue a social investment approach and prioritise investments in social services and benefits that strengthen people's skills and capabilities have lower levels of poverty and social exclusion, better educational outcomes, more and better jobs, and more sustainable public finances and growth.

“Social investment in essence means helping people to prepare for life's challenges, by prioritising investments in childcare, education, lifelong learning, anti-poverty and social exclusion, engaging labour market policies, active ageing, and by tackling discrimination and promoting equal opportunities. We

need to implement this strategy by agreeing a binding Social Investment Pact. “Eu Member States have rightly agreed detailed rules for the monitoring and coordination of our economic and budgetary policies. We must now do the same for our social and employment policies through a Social Investment Pact. We must place the same emphasis on investing in people and in education as we do on stabilising our public finances. “Like the 'Euro Plus Pact', a European Social Investment Pact should set out a list of specific measures in the form of social investments to be taken by Member States with the support of Eu funding, particularly the European Social Fund, over a given time frame in order to meet the employment, anti-poverty and education targets of the Europe 2020 strategy. This should be subject to a monitoring framework of common social indicators.

“Last December, European Summit finally recognised the importance of strengthening the social dimension of a genuine EMu. The future of EMu will be discussed again at the June Summit at the end of the Irish Presidency. I believe this Summit should aim for concrete progress towards a binding Social Investment Pact for the Eu to ensure that our budgetary objectives are reconciled with our social and employment ones.”

eurolink... what’s happening in the european parliament

The Irish government is being urged to veto a plan to cut the number of Irish MEP seats from 12 down to 11 in 2014. Fianna Fáil MEP Pat the Cope Gallagher said it is within the remit of the government to use the power of its veto on the European Council to protect Irish seats and influence within the European Parliament. The proposal for 12 Eu countries to each lose one seat advanced a step this week, when it won the approval of a key committee in Brussels. The Constitutional Affairs Committee voted for what it described as a “pragmatic and least unfair solution” to the requirement of the Lisbon Treaty which states that the European Parliament must reduce seat numbers by 15 down to 751 members after the next European elections. The committee said that if 12 member states each renounced one seat, it would allow for the addition of new Croatian MEPs and ensure that “nobody gains seats and nobody loses more than one.” However, Irish MEP Pat the

Cope Gallagher claimed that the decision was biased against smaller states including Ireland. “Cutting seats is necessary due to the pending accession of Croatia. However, this could have been facilitated by reducing the number of seats allocated to larger member states where there is a list system for their entire country, unlike Ireland which has multi-seat constituencies,” said the Fianna Fáil MEP. He added that the “large and sprawling” constituency of Ireland north West, which he represents, may have to be further enlarged if an Irish MEP seat is lost, subject to a boundary commission review. “The recommendation will now go to the plenary of the European Parliament where I will have an opportunity to vote against it. However, the real decision rests with the European Council and the government has the option to veto any reduction in the seats allocated to Ireland.” Small firms spared red tape in new data protection rules

Small to medium-sized businesses will not be forced

to hire a Data Protection Officer unless their core activity is data processing, thanks to an intervention this week by Irish MEP Sean Kelly. The Fine Gael MEP has secured an exemption for SMEs from employing a Data Protection Officer under new rules currently being drafted in Brussels. Mr Kelly, lead negotiator on the Data Protection Regulation, said if the measure had been mandatory it would have “smothered every small business in Europe”. “Requiring each business, from hairdresser to restaurant, to hire a DPO would be a ridiculous rule placing enormous financial burdens on companies already struggling to stay afloat,” he said. But he warned that firms who are in the business of processing or handling data will “naturally” be required to employ a DPO. The British government has estimated that the annual extra cost of mandatory DPOs will be €200 million per annum. However, if all SMEs had been included in the rule, Mr Kelly said this cost would have quadrupled. The amendment secured by

Mr Kelly was agreed by the European Parliament's Industry Committee, along with 90 other cross-party amendments on the comprehensive legislation. More negotiations will follow, but it's expected that the final text of the Data Protection Regulation will come before the entire European Parliament in April or May.

The regulation will affect every citizen and business in Europe and is regarded as the most important legislative dossier passing through the parliament between now and 2014. EU ignored warnings before horsemeat scandal

An Irish MEP has accused the European Commission of being “lax and neglectful” in its failure to pre-empt and tackle food fraud of the type uncovered in the continuing horsemeat scandal. Fianna Fáil MEP Liam Aylward said reports from Interpol and the World Custom union in 2011 of a growing epidemic of food crime should have acted as a “red flag” for the Eu authorities as to how open

and vulnerable the agri-food sector was to exploitation. But Mr Aylward said that when he raised the issue in a written question last year, the response from Brussels was “disappointing”. The Commission's reply was as follows: “Official controls ensure the idendification of shortcomings and should allow the adoption of remedial action and penalties where food crimes are committed. In light of this, there is no need to develop a specific strategy to fight food fraud.” Mr Aylward said that while the urgent plan that has now been drafted by Eu leaders to battle food fraud is welcome, action should clearly have been taken sooner. “It's a case of closing the stable door after the horse(meat) has bolted,” he quipped. “It should not have taken the vigilance of the Irish authorities to bring this chronic problem to the fore; there should have been more stringent checks across the supply chain,” added Mr Aylward. The World Customs Institute has dubbed food fraud as “the crime of the century”

earning perpetrators $49 million annually. Europol's “Operation Opson” in 2011 seized thousands of fraudulent foodstuffs, including 13,000 bottles of substandard olive oil and 77,000kg of counterfeit cheese. Meanwhile, Fine Gael MEP Mairead McGuinness has appealed to the European Commission not to “waste” the horsemeat crisis by simply addressing the symptoms, but not the cause, of food fraud. Ms McGuinness said one of the underlying problems is the length of the food supply chain and the number of operators involved. “Major food processors and retailers have tremendous power and influence on what happens in the food chain, yet we have discovered that they do not actually know all of the links in their supply chain and therefore cannot give consumers any guarantees of authenticity.” She called on the Commission to propose measures to mend the “fractured” food supply chain and also to put greater responsibility onto retailers to verify and authenticate their suppliers.


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Rapunzel’s Hair & Beauty full set of gel nails only €40

full body wild tan only €10

strip lashes & make up

shellic nails, strip lashes & tan

cuts short €20 med €25 long €30

blow dries short €10 med/long €15 curly from €15

5 for 5 offer

waxing bonanza

only €40 colours

tints €50 meche €55 from

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full leg and regular bikini only €30 californian only €45 brazilian only €55 hollywood only €65


32

breathnach’s bargains Your FREE Local Newspaper

st dominic’s shopping centre

super giveaways

jacobs nice biscuits 200g 4 pkts only

€1.00

pampers baby wipes green pk only

€1.00

birds custard 300 g tins 3 For

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pink ‘n’ white waFers ‘6 in a pack’ 4 pkts only

€1.00

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large tins oF cleaning sprays 500ml 10 types any 2 For

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irn / bru box oF 10 easter cans cards 10 For only

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comFort 4 litre now only

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toblerrone 400g was €4.00 now only

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cadburys all choc biscuits 380g tin now only

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12 x 500ml lucozade summer Fruits only

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100 wasH suRf auto only €15.99

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