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West Clare

‘No health and safety issues’ at direct provision centre

NO health and safety issues were identified during an unannounced visit by a senior official from the Department of Justice and Equality to the Direct Provision centre in Miltown Malbay last week, it has been revealed. “I am advised that there was no evidence of any rodent activity or water leaking on the day my official visited,” Minister for Justice and Equality Charlie Flanagan stated in briefing note seen by The Clare Champion. Mr Flanagan commissioned the report following concerns raised in correspondence and Parliamentary Questions relating to the emergency accommodation premises for international protection applicants at the Central Hostel in Miltown Malbay. Hostel owner Pat Kelly did not wish to make any comment but said to contact the Department of Justice on the issue. Last Thursday (June 4), officials from the International Protection Accommodation Service (IPAS) held a clinic via video call with residents of the centre, which was attended by 12 of the 19 residents. The clinic was …

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Loophead phone coverage ‘virtually non-existent’

THE plight of the farming community in accessing mobile phone and broadband services in West Clare has been highlighted by a Loop Head man who estimates that his family have paid more than €1,000 over a six-month period when they have virtually no coverage. John Keane, who lives half way between Cross and Kilbaha, is a dairy farmer, milking over 200 cows a day. He outlined how, since last November, five members of his family have had worsening problems in accessing a phone signal, and said the issue is also affecting the wider community. The situation is now so bad that Mr Keane fears that in the event of him having an accident or a heart attack in his milking parlour, he would be unable to use his phone to raise the alarm. “I would die in the milking parlour, if, God forbid, I had a heart attack,” he said. “As a farmer, the mobile phone is a safety net. …

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Kilkee coast guard unit further down-graded

ACROSS the May Bank Holiday weekend, Kilkee had no coast guard service available in the event of an emergency. A source has told The Clare Champion that the limited service the Kilkee unit of the Irish Coast Guard had been providing was further down-graded, following a recent training incident. It has also been claimed that the current coast guard crew have not recently passed an Operational Readiness Assessment (ORA) in more than two years. The Clare Champion contacted the Department of Transport on Wednesday for a comment on the claims, but it had not responded at the time of going to press. “The coast guard will say that they have a boat. We all know they have a boat but they don’t have a crew. Every time they need to go in the water, they need to bring an instructor down from Maritime SAR to even get on the water to do the training. There are about six people who …

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Síle did not allow CF to define her

SÍLE Callinan lived a very full life and central to that was her love of football. The Cree girl sadly passed away on March 17 this year, aged just 26, having suffered a collapsed lung, brought on by Cystic Fibrosis (CF). Her death left her family and fiancé devastated. Síle was the youngest of Paddy and Mary Callinan’s three daughters and engaged to Micheál Talty, Quilty. She was a primary school teacher and worked as a resource teacher in Cree, Cooraclare and Kilrush, while Síle also taught at Labasheeda National School for a year. While her sister Anne-Marie and Micheál are certain that the last thing Síle would want is a fuss, they are leading the organisation of a 12-team seven-a-side ladies’ football tournament in Cooraclare on Saturday, October 7. “My dad has a big interest in football and the three of us played. Síle started at corner-back and she was moved up to the forwards but she didn’t hold …

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