White announces she will seek FF nomination to contest next general election

Seanad Report

Mary White: intends to run for the Dáil

Mary White: intends to run for the Dáil

Fri, Jun 21, 2013, 01:00

Fianna Fáil senator Mary White announced in the Seanad yesterday that she intends seeking a party nomination to contest the three-seat Dublin Rathdown constituency in the next general election.

The constituency replaces the Dublin South five-seater where the party has no seat.

Ms White, who lives in Dundrum, south Dublin, has been a senator since 2002.

She said she had recently attended an “awesome and inspiring’’ speech by Prof Ian Robertson of Trinity College. He had advised people to challenge themselves continuously, make changes in their lives and keep learning. People should not look back in 20 years and ask why they had not done something or other.

“That is why I have decided I will throw my hat into the ring to go for the Dáil in the new Dublin Rathdown area,’’ Ms White added. “I do not want to be looking back.’’

A number of senators criticised cutbacks in funding for special needs assistants and additional resource hours in schools.

Darragh O’Brien (FF) said there were 4,000 extra children in the system seeking assistance. “Whatever language the Government uses, it is a 10 per cent cut.’’

Mary Ann O’Brien (Ind) said the cuts were “savage and unacceptable’’. Staff in a Tallaght school fad told her they were granted only 33 of the 90 resource hours sought. Its special needs staff had been reduced, despite taking on four new students this year.

Fidelma Healy Eames (FG) said a huge amount of money was being spent on special educational needs. “We must find a new way of managing resources to ensure all children are treated fairly.’’