Local Fianna Fáil TD, Darragh O’Brien has said that demand on Dublin Bus in Fingal is reaching crisis point for commuters who rely on the service daily.
The Deputy received a commitment this month that Dublin Bus and the National Transport Authority are set to monitor and review the 33X service with the intention of increasing services on this route to help meet this increased demand.
He said, “After subsequent representations to Dublin Bus to address the demand on the service in the services in our area, I am glad that they have acknowledged the growing demand on bus services for those living along pressurised routes in Fingal.
“I am hopeful that Dublin Bus will extend peak bus services on route 33X, which serves Lusk, Rush & Skerries, following this review.
“Transport services should be sustainable and have the capacity to meet the needs of rapidly growing population in our county. As any commuter will tell you, there is no doubt that Fingal is in critical need of additional services to fill the gaps in existing services.
“There are countless people getting up at the crack of dawn to make their way to work but face a chaotic and overcrowded commute to work. It's becoming unbearable.
O’Brien concluded, “I am deeply concerned that without a long-term plan set out by the Minister, the gridlock and commuter chaos will continue on a daily basis.”
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Foreign and Trade, Darragh O’Brien TD has criticised the international response to the brutal conflict in Syria.
The Deputy raised his concerns regarding the response of the international community and the United Nations Security Council to the ongoing Syrian War, with the Tánaiste earlier this afternoon.
Speaking in Dáil Éireann he said, “Sadly, this month marks the 7th anniversary of the outbreak of war in Syria. Since 2011, close to half a million people have been killed; over 13 million people remain in need of humanitarian assistance and almost 6 million Syrians have been displaced, most forced to flee to neighbouring countries.
“This violent conflict and unrest has led to one of the greatest humanitarian crises in modern times and the global response has repeatedly fallen short.
“The steady outflow of refugees, the dangerous threat of the proliferation of nuclear weapons combined with the deepening sectarian divide have fuelled fears that this war may engulf farther regions; affecting more and more innocent Syrians.
“It is particularly harrowing that in recent weeks we have witnessed the unfolding of further atrocities in Eastern Ghouta, where once again it is understood that war crimes have been committed.
“The grim reality is that the international community and the UN Security Council, which is hamstrung by the use of its veto, have been ineffective in mediating a ceasefire.
“International diplomacy has done little if anything to protect those caught in this conflict to date and aid conveys to besieged areas continue to be blocked.
“Ireland is currently seeking a seat on the UN Security Council and with that in mind I have raised the use of the Russian veto which is obstructing the enforcement of a sustainable period of ceasefire, with the Tánaiste this afternoon.
He concluded, “Our Government must continue to strongly press international counterparts to pursue a full diplomatic resolution to the Syrian conflict and recommit to providing long-term humanitarian assistance to vulnerable Syrians.”
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs & Trade Darragh O’Brien has sought a meeting with Minister Simon Coveney to discuss the situation concerning allegations against the Russian government.
Deputy O’Brien explained, “I have written to Minister Coveney seeking a formal meeting to discuss the government’s position in relation to possible plans to sanction Russia in the wake of the Salisbury incident in the UK. I have already expressed concerns about certain comments made by the Taoiseach last week relating to the possible expulsion of Russian ambassadors.
“The government should not be rushing to judgement before having a thorough, objective & neutral assessment of allegations, and this is something I intend to raise with Minister Coveney.
“However, the reports which have emerged this morning about the financial dealings of Russian citizens living in Ireland are a matter of concern.
“I understand that our own security and justice services are compiling information on what options are open to the government in the event that it deems it necessary to take action against Russia.
“Given the gravity of the situation, I have asked for an update from Minister Coveney on current developments and any measures the government is considering. I will also be requesting that time is allocated to discuss the issue in the Dáil this week”.
Local Fianna Fáil TD and Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Darragh O’Brien has said that the Government must ensure the full protection of all trade and jobs in Ireland ahead of Britain’s exit from the European Customs Union.
Deputy O’Brien and his party colleague and Brexit Spokesperson Stephen Donnelly TD held a series of meetings with British politicians, Nick Clegg, Andrew Adonis and Michael Heseltine, Former Deputy Prime Minister to discuss the potential challenges posed by Brexit and the impact on Ireland.
Commenting following his meeting yesterday he said, “Existing trade between Ireland and Britain amounts to €1.2 billion in goods and services every week. Maintaining the fruitful relationship between the two countries has never been more pivotal.
“Our meetings this week were an opportunity to discuss our shared concerns and particularly those of business owners, employers and the thousands of jobs that are heavily dependent on maintaining trade with Britain.
"While I am most concerned regarding the impact on Fingal, Ireland as a whole stands to face much uncertainty and threats to important jobs.
“The depreciation of the Sterling and Britain’s impending exit from the Customs Union may well result in unfair prices in business and could potentially threaten Irish jobs.
“It is important that we liaise with those in Britain who share similar views and are equally fearful of their countries decision to leave the European Union.
He concluded, “We must come together to limit the adverse impact of Brexit and I believe this week’s meetings were a step in that direction."
- Delays in processing times impacting on public -
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Trade Darragh O’Brien TD has urged anyone intending on travelling abroad to check that their passports are in date and to allow sufficient time if they need to be renewed.
O’Brien made his comments over concerns that applications submitted via the An Post Passport Express Service are not being processed within the target turnaround time of 15 days.
Deputy O’Brien said, “We are entering the holiday season and I am urging all those intending on travelling abroad to check that their passports are in date and to allow sufficient time if they require their passport to be renewed.
“If possible I would urge people to renew their passport via the Online Passport Renewal Service which has a target time of 10 working days. This service can be accessed at https://passportonline.dfa.ie. However, I would caution that at present the online service only accommodates adult renewals and passport card applications.
“I specifically raised the issue of resources with regard to the passport service with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney at a recent meeting of the Foreign Affairs and Trade Committee. This is something which I have consistently raised with the Minister and have highlighted that additional resources are needed to ensure passport processing times are met. The current service is under resourced and unable to keep up with demand.
“I have come across several cases where people are waiting in excess of 20 days for a renewal and 25 days for a new passport application. I was informed by Minister Coveney that losing three days as a result of Storm Emma has resulted in the backlog in processing passport applications. Whilst I appreciate that this has created difficulties it is imperative that additional resources are given to ensure that the public can have their passports processed within the expected time-frame.
“I intend to raise this issue again next week with Minister Coveney. It is essential that, given the large increase in passport applications as a result of Brexit and the impending holiday season, the entirety of our passport service is sufficiently resourced to meet demand.”
Fianna Fáil TD for Dublin Fingal, Darragh O’Brien has said that a Dáil motion submitted by his Party this week is aimed to ensure the full retention of emergency services provided by Dublin Fire Brigade across the city and county.
O’Brien commented, “Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) has been providing crucial ambulance services to the citizens of the city and North County since 1898.
“The Brigade now operates with life-saving equipment and over 800 trained firefighter paramedic’s work to provide immediate medical assistance to members of public in need of treatment 24/7, 365 days a year.
“The HSE has proposed to remove the delivery of Dublin’s ambulance service from Dublin Fire Brigade and instead merge the service with the National Ambulance Service;
“Such a proposal could have a huge negative impact on the delivery of services from the DFB call centre while removing any element of DFB’s fire based EMS system will have an adverse effect on safeguarding those in our community.
“I am calling for the full support for the almost 1,000 personnel employed, to maximise service delivery and provide greater efficiency to protect those in fire stations across Dublin who provide a full-time fire, rescue, and ambulance service which serves our whole community;
Staff must be lauded for their ability to respond to thousands of emergency calls across the capital every year. A direct funding mechanism should be designed to allow DFB to continue to operate all areas of DFB’s fire based EMS service.
He concluded, “Our motion underscores the seriousness of this threat and reiterates our firm commitment to the full retention of ambulance services provided by Dublin Fire Brigade across Dublin.”