Politicians trying to hide behind 'imaginary middle ground'

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was accused of trying to hide behind an 'imaginary middle ground' on abortion rights by Solidarity TD Ruth Coppinger.

It came following comments by the Taoiseach yesterday when he said that the proposal for abortion on request up to 12 weeks 'may be a step too far' for many people.

 

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Conor Skehan 'should be removed from position' - Solidarity

At a protest at the Housing Agency today, Solidarity called on Conor Skehan to be removed as Chair of the Housing Agency. This comes after he accused homeless people of ‘gaming the system’ and said that the record levels of homelessness were ‘normal’.

Ruth Coppinger TD said “In the last few months, Conor Skehan has publicly tried to downplay the scale of the crisis and has accused homeless people of deliberately making themselves homeless. He is a homelessness denier.

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Fitzgerald resignation fallout: Department of Justice 'a cesspit', 'arrogant' Varadkar seriously undermined

This morning, Tanaiste Frances Fitzgerald was forced to resign after further emails were found during a 'trawl' of the Department of Justice systems which revealed that she received numerous emails in relation to the Maurice McCabe affair and plans by senior Gardai to attack his integrity and credibility. 

Solidarity TDs have said today that this is not the end of the matter and that there are still serious questions to be answered.

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Fine Gael criticised for 'putting one woman's career ahead of all women's need for a referendum'

As discussions between Fianna Fail and Fine Gael continue in their attempt to prevent the government collapsing over the role of Minister Frances Fitzgerald in the Maurice McCabe scandal, Solidarity TD Ruth Coppinger has for action to allow a referendum on the Repeal of the 8th Amendment to be fast-tracked through the Dáil. 

Should the government collapse, the Oireachtas Committee on the 8th Amendment which is still discussing the issue would also collapse.

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Bill to curb 'anti-homeless devices' launched as Fine Gael criticised on housing crisis

This morning outside Gandon House Solidarity TDs Mick Barry, Ruth Coppinger and Paul Murphy launched the Planning & Development (Amendment) Bill 2017 which aims to prevent the installation of anti-homeless devices, or so-called 'defensive architecture'. This has seen public buildings and companies in city centres install spikes, sprinklers, studs and bars which are intended to deter rough sleepers.

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"Is this campaign against the homeless what Varadkar pays €5million for?" TD accuses Taoiseach of spin campaign

This week has seen a number of public comments on the housing and homelessness crisis by senior politicians and high ranking officials in state agencies responsible for housing and homelessness. This has led to accusations that a 'spin campaign is underway to change the narrative' on the crisis. 

 

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Paradise Papers - "The system is rigged in favour of the rich"

The Paradise Papers, which were released on Sunday, have shone a light on the secretive tax avoidance measures by the wealthy and major corporations. These latest leaks follow on from the Panama Papers which highlighted the use of the secretive tax haven.  
More information will be released over the coming days which will put more focus on wealthy Irish people and companies based here. 

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'Slum-landlords should face prison and fines' - Pressure on government after housing investigation

The RTE Prime Time Investigates programme exposed shocking conditions in the private rented sector with scenes of dangerous overcrowding, poor living conditions and a lack of enforcement of housing regulations. 

The programme showed tenants who are sharing accommodation in 3 or 4 bedroom houses with 50 to 60 other people in barracks-like conditions.

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New poll on abortion shows support for Citizens' Assembly Recommendations

A new Amnesty/Red C opinion poll shows that 60% of people support abortion at the request of the pregnant person themselves. This is in line with the recommendations of the Citizens' Assembly which are currently being discussed by an Oireachtas Committee which will decide on the wording of any referendum to repeal the 8th Amednment.

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'Government policy is responsible for this strike'; Calls for Minister Ross to apologise to the public

Irish Rail workers will today take the first of 5 days of national strike action in their dispute with the company and government over a wage increase.

Talks between workers' unions, the company and the government broke down, with the company standing accused of 'collapsing' the talks.

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