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Minister Simon Coveney

Fast uptake advised for farm safety scheme

Farmers have been advised to move quickly to take full advantage of the new Farm Safety Scheme announced by Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney on Wednesday.

“The window for action on this is quite narrow, as the closing date for receipt of applications is Friday, January 9, 2015 and all work must be completed and a payment claim lodged with the Department by Monday, August 31, 2015,” explained ICSA Connacht/Ulster vice-president, John Flynn.

“ICSA welcomes the minister’s constructive use of funds available under the old 2007-2013 Rural Development Programme,” continued Mr Flynn, who represents ICSA on the Farm Safety Partnership Advisory Committee (FSPAC).

“Given the number of slurry -related accidents and deaths, it’s good to see that safety fencing and covers for external slurry and effluent stores are covered by the scheme, and from a drystock perspective, the inclusion of sheep and cattle handling facilities is very welcome. ICSA has already lobbied for the targeting of TAMS funding for such facilities.”

“However, this is only a once-off scheme and while using this money to help farmers upgrade their safety facilities is very positive, the Minister must continue to focus on education and reaching out to older farmers who may not find it easy to access farm safety resources,” said Mr Flynn.

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