Tipperary TD Mattie McGrath raised a number of concerns in the Dáil yesterday during the visit of the President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola – the President addressed a joint sitting of the Dáil and Seanad to mark 50 years since Ireland joined the EU then known as the European Economic Community.
Deputy McGrath accepted that Ireland has had benefits from 50 years of EU membership but also pointed to the austerity measures imposed by the Troika, after the financial crash in 2009, which has left housing, education and healthcare in a less than satisfactory standard.
The leader of the Rural independents also questioned if the EU was taking the right path on climate change measures and asked that EU State Aid Rules be reviewed so that Coillte could avail of EU forestry premiums to develop the industry on behalf of the state.
The Refugee crisis was the biggest concern for the Tipperary TD as he accused the government of a lack of planning and communication in how it accommodated refugees claiming the government “is foisting people on communities with no information, no proper truth and no proper discussion or debate.”
Deputy McGrath says people want to be welcoming but want to do so positively and welcomed the opportunity to discuss the matter in the Dáil next week in a session dedicated to the refugee crisis.