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Dr Michael Harty, who has apologised for attending the controversial Oireachtas Golf Society dinner in Clifden. Photograph by John Kelly

Harty praises ‘Ask for Anglea’ campaign

THE campaign which aims to make life safer for people who are on a night out has been praised by Clare’s Independent TD. Dr Michael Harty said the idea, which is relatively new to Ireland, encourages people who find themselves in an uncomfortable situation to “Ask for Angela” at the bar.
“People of my generation don’t always realise how much the world has changed. More people are now using online dating apps to meet a companion. They may agree to meet up in a pub or a night club and then discover that all is not right, that the profile was misleading or for some other reason they want to get out of the situation. Using this code “Ask for Angela” is a really convenient way of letting staff know that help is required,” Dr. Harty said.
“Of course, the success of the initiative will depend on the number of venues which participate and it is crucial that staff including bar people, waiters and security are fully briefed on the campaign and know exactly what to do when somebody feels uncomfortable or under threat. I commend Clare Branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland for getting behind the campaign and organising information evenings for their members who I hope will respond enthusiastically,” he added.
Dr Harty said the venue operators and staff in particular will ultimately determine the extent to which the campaign works. “It is excellent that Clare County Council and the Gardai have teamed up with the Vintners but it is management and staff who will ensure that the Ask for Angela posters are in the right places and the concerns are dealt with promptly and with empathy. It is in all our interests that a night out in Clare should be an enjoyable experience but above all else, it should be safe,” he concluded.

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