Monthly Archive for April, 2008

Press Release – Graffiti Reduction Programme a welcome boost for local communities – O’Gorman

15/04/08

Green Party Dublin 15 representative, Roderic O’Gorman, has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for the Environment, John Gormley TD, that he is to launch a joint programme with the Department of Justice to support local communities in dealing with graffiti.

“Across Laurel Lodge, Carpenterstown, Castleknock and Blanchardstown, a regular complaint I am hearing from residents is that graffiti is becoming more and more common. It is affecting both public and private property. It’s great to see a Minister who is committed to tackling within communities. John Gormley regularly raised the issue of graffiti while the Green Party was in opposition – now as Minister he is rolling out a programme to deal with it”.

The first set of funds to be allocated will be ring-fenced to RAPID areas, while from May on, all communities will be able to apply for the grants.

“The key aspect of this programme will be funding local community groups to take their own initiatives to deal with the problem. This takes account of the fact that a ‘one-size fits all’ approach may not be suitable to dealing with the issue. Minister Gormley has provided a budget of € 3.75 million to back the scheme.

“This funding will support a range of practices such as graffiti removal, targeted initiatives against graffiti offenders, better types of landscape design and community art projects to divert young persons from vandalism in the first place. As such, the scheme has a broadly positive focus. I would urge local groups in Dublin 15 to investigate if the programme would be of benefit to their activities”, concluded Roderic O’Gorman.

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Further Information
Roderic O’Gorman: 087 417 9777
rodericogorman@gmail.com

Note to Editors

Community Graffiti Reduction Programme
The Community Graffiti Reduction Programme is a new national initiative following on from a pilot project carried out by the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. It aims:
– To support an immediate reduction in the extent and impact of graffiti within the communities who participate in the programme;
– To develop local mechanisms within these communities to support the long-term reduction of incidences of graffiti.

The programme is sponsored by the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform, the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government and the Department of Community Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. It will be managed and delivered by Pobal. In 2008 up to €3.75 million is being made available to fund projects.
Local groups (including tidy towns groups) or consortia of groups and state agencies, with at least three years experience of working on environmental and community safety issues, are eligible to apply for funding.

The programme will fund the following range of activities:

• Graffiti removal: Practical identification and removal of any graffiti within a public space, or on private property which is visible from a public space.

• Identification of improved landscape design. This will include work with Local Authorities, businesses or others to identify methods to reduce the targeting of individual sites for graffiti and the impact of graffiti on these sites by the improvement of planting, fencing and other arrangements.

• Targeted initiatives (including training initiatives) to work with young adult offenders or young adults at risk to include them in anti-graffiti activities.

• Educational initiatives on graffiti with broad groups of young people within the targeted area. This may include work with youth groups, sporting groups, clubs, schools etc to educate children on the effects and impact of graffiti on the quality of life of local communities, initiatives to change young people*s perceptions of graffiti, or work to broaden the understanding of young people of graffiti as an issue of environmental degradation.

• Supporting businesses in self-help to stop or remove graffiti. As part of a wider initiative, funds can be made available to supply business with graffiti cleaning kits, or to offer advice and support on preventative anti-graffiti measures.

• Community arts projects to divert young people from destructive graffiti. These can include collaborative work with groups of children and young people on arts projects and on the creation of outdoor and publicly visible arts projects, which offer outlets for artistic creation without the negative effects of graffiti.

Funding Phases and Mechanisms

Funding will be allocated in two phases. The first phase, Scheme A, will be confined to RAPID (Revitalising Areas through Planning, Investment and Development) areas only. The second phase, Scheme B, will be available nationally.

Under Scheme A, eligible groups may access an immediate budget (€30,000) to begin graffiti removal activities. This will be followed by the national Scheme B which will support longer-term and more varied actions to reduce and control graffiti.
Under scheme B, grants of between €50,000 and €150,000 are available.
Scheme B will commence in May 2008.

Press Release – O’Gorman calls for repairs to Riverwood Playground

05/04/08

Green Party Dublin 15 representative, Roderic O’Gorman has called on Fingal County Council to undertake repairs to the swings in the playground at Riverwood, Dublin 15.

“Residents in the Riverwood area have contacted me to complain that the swings in the playground beside Riverwood Chase have been ripped down. I visited the playground and indeed the swings have been removed and other acts of minor vandalism have occurred”, stated Roderic O’Gorman.

“I have contacted Fingal County Council and raised the issue with them. They have informed me that they are currently awaiting delivery of a new set of swings and when these arrive, the repairs will be undertaken”.

“The Riverwood playground is one of a very small number of neighbourhood playgrounds in the D 15 area. It is vital that community facilities like this are maintained to the highest standard. I’m calling on Fingal County Council to act quickly to resolve this problem”, concluded Roderic O’Gorman.

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Further Information
Roderic O’Gorman: 087 417 9777

Press Release – O’Gorman Welcomes Funding for Special Needs Unit in Castleknock Educate Together

05/04/08

Green Party Dublin 15 representative, Roderic O’Gorman has welcomed the news that the HSE have provided the necessary funding to open the special unit for autistic children in Castleknock Educate Together National School.

“I’m absolutely delighted that the HSE have contacted Castleknock Educate Together and informed them that it will be allocating sufficient funding to enable the school open its special needs unit for autistic children. This will allow the new unit, which has been standing unused up to now, provide for multi-disciplinary support for autistic children attending CETNS”, stated Roderic O’Gorman.

“The absence of funding for CETNS has been a major issue both in Dublin 15 and the national media for the last few months. A wide range of organisations, individuals and politicians including myself and the Minister for Energy & Communications, Eamon Ryan TD, lobbied the HSE and requested it to take full account of the need for such a unit in the Dublin 15 area. Parents such as Gayle Murphy, and the staff and Board of Management of the school all fought valiantly in order to achieve this outcome”.

“As part of our negotiations for the Programme for Government, the Green Party secured permanent funding for the 12 existing dedicated ABA schools in the country. However, this is just a first step as it is vital both to increase the number of ABA schools, but also to support units like that in Castleknock Educate Together NS where autistic children can benefit from tailored education, but also enjoy the traditional school environment”, concluded Roderic O’Gorman.

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Further Information
Roderic O’Gorman: 087 417 9777