#GE2020: What candidates say about the big topics in Dublin Bay South

by Rachel Darcy

Dublin Gazette have reached out to all the confirmed candidates in Dublin Bay South, who will be campaigning for a spot in the Dáil in General Election 2020. We asked them all the same set of questions, to help inform you about where they stand on just some of the main issues of the day.

Here are the questions asked:

  • Q1 – How would you address the chronic problems that are prevalent in the Health Service?
  • Q2 – How would you address the chronic problems in the housing sector?
  • Q3 – What ways would you address education issues in your area at a Government level?
  • Q4 – What is your stance on Climate Change? How green/accessible is your campaign?
  • Q5 – Do you think Public Transport in your area is sufficient? What changes might you make?
  • Q6 – Why do you think people should vote for you?

Here is what the general election candidates had to say* – the following answers were from those who had responded by our deadline.

Sarah Durcan, Social Democrats

Q1 – Funding and implementing Slaintecare is essential, including moving to primary and community care so acute hospital beds aren’t being used for care that can be provided closer to home. Also dealing with the waste and inefficiency in the system.

Q2 – Some of our key fixes include a rent freeze across the country; ensuring new developments have 20% affordable housing on top of 10% social; preventing land hoarding, and building public housing on public land.
Q3 – We need more schools, and more choice of schools in Dublin Bay South. We also need more investment in third level education, and making it more affordable and accessible, so our young people are equipped with the skills they need.
Q4 – As someone who works in art and science and empowering young people to tackle our great challenges, I strongly believe we must take urgent climate action, without putting an undue burden on lower income households. SocDems would prioritise more high-capacity and frequent public transport and cycling, more urban biodiversity; retrofitting to insulate homes and workplaces, and innovating to have increased renewable energy from wind, wave and solar.
Q5 – More public transport, and active transport options are required right across Dublin Bay South. This city is too car-reliant, and people are spending hundreds of wasted hours a year stuck in traffic that is contributing to bad air quality and affecting our health and our quality of life.
Q6 – I’ve always been committed to making our community a better place for all, through my work in arts and culture, my activism with #WakingTheFeminists, and through my day-job in building a global science gallery network dedicated to inspiring millions of young minds.

Jim O’Callaghan, Fianna Fail

Q1 – We must increase recruitment of both consultants and of nursing staff, and increase bed capacity. Fianna Fail is committed to hiring 800 hospital consultants and 4,000 nursing staff.

Q2 – I want to help people out of the rip-off rental market, get councils back building homes, and address the homelessness crisis. I am committed to ensuring the commitment given to the people of Ringsend and Irishtown that 900 affordable houses would be constructed on the Irish Glass Bottle site.
Q3 – I will ensure that the teacher/pupil ration is reduced to 20:1 at primary level and that capitation levels are boosted. There is also a chronic shortage of ASD Units available and measures need to be put in place to ensure that there are additional ASD Units made available, where possible.
Q4 – It is clear that Ireland won’t meet its EU 2020 carbon reduction target, and is likely to fall far short of the 2030 target too. There is a pressing need to readdress our transport choices. I am a keen cyclist and am keenly aware of the need to invest in our cycling infrastructure.
Q5 – Public transport provision is totally insufficient, and we need to ramp up investment across bus and rail to reduce congestion and journey times. I would like to drastically increase investment in cycling infrastructure, in particular, to make cycling safer and more attractive.
Q6 – I care passionately about this area and the people that live here. I was honoured to be elected to represent the people of Dublin Bay South in 2016. If I am given their vote again, I will continue to give everything I can to do this to the best of my ability.

(*Some answers may have been edited for clarity.)

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