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Gary Gannon TD

Taoiseach’s Taskforce needed to drive positive change in the capital

Social Democrats TD Gary Gannon has welcomed confirmation that statements on Dublin will be heard in the Dáil for the first time next Thursday (November 17), when he will renew his call for the establishment of a Taoiseach’s Taskforce on O’Connell Street.

Deputy Gannon, who represents Dublin Central, has been asking the Oireachtas Business Committee for a debate on issues affecting the capital for more than a year.

“Allowing statements on Dublin to be made in the Dáil is an important win for those of us who care about the future of our beautiful city.

“There has been renewed focus on the problems plaguing O’Connell Street since the recent report on RTÉ’s Prime Time. However, issues such as dereliction, persistent littering, anti-social activity and open drug dealing have been decades in the making and are a result of lack of leadership in the city.

“The challenges facing Dublin extend well beyond O’Connell Street and deserve nothing less than the attention of our national parliament.

“A Taoiseach’s Taskforce would help coordinate a multi-departmental approach to tackling the city’s problems, from housing and homelessness to crime and the erosion of our cultural and heritage spaces. Measures to address the underlying causes of drug use, including health-led supports and treatment for those suffering from addiction, are also needed.

“The reform of our licensing laws next year, while welcome, will require advance planning to ensure there are late-night public transport services and additional policing resources in place.

“A taskforce, led by an incoming Dublin-based Taoiseach, could drive change in the city and keep the issue on the political agenda. Allowing TDs to make statements in the Dáil next week is a positive first step, but it must be followed up with meaningful action by the Government.”

November 10, 2022

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