“My commitment to the people of Dublin West“

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Joan selected for Labour Party for Dublin West in the 2016 General Election

I’m honoured and privileged to have been reselected by the Labour Party members of Dublin West to run for the Party in the 2016 General Election. I am very proud to represent the people of Dublin West, and have always done my utmost to ensure their voice is heard at national level. That work will continue over the next year, during which my priorities at national and local level will be:

Providing opportunity
Ireland is unrecognisable from the dark days of 2008, thanks to the sacrifices people have made and the policies pursued by Labour in Government, which have enabled us to turn the economy around. Ireland was the fastest-growing economy in Europe last year, and will be again this year. We now have an immense opportunity: the opportunity to secure the recovery, spread the benefits of growth and relentlessly raise living standards. I want to ensure:

· That everyone who wants a job gets a job.

· That work pays a living wage so that families can get on rather than just get by.

· That we can invest additional money to build new schools and health care facilities.

· That we have more gardai on our streets so that our communities are safe and secure for our loved ones.

· That we maintain a strong welfare state to protect our vulnerable and older citizens.

· And that a generation can come home to a rebuilt, better Ireland of new hopes, dreams and possibilities.

We started the process of raising living standards in last year’s Budget, when we reduced tax for every worker, increased Child Benefit, reintroduced the Christmas Bonus and announced a record housing package.

It was a small but significant start. And in the next Budget this October, we’ll continue that process, and will have up to €1.5 billion to ensure further tax reductions for low and middle-income earners, and significant investment in the services we all depend on.

More jobs

Having a fairly paid and secure job is the single best way of raising living standards. The number of people at work has increased by more than 95,000 since the peak of the employment crisis, and unemployment has fallen by a third – from 15% to 10%. We’ve much more to do, but we’re making significant progress. And that progress underlines a crucial point. To secure the recovery, to deliver on our economic potential and realise the opportunities for our people, it is essential we stay on the right path.

And that is the path laid out by Labour in Government.

The Live Register in Dublin West continues to fall as more people go back to work, and in recent months, we’ve seen a series of additional jobs announcements at IBM, Bristol Myers and Guidewire, involving hundreds of new jobs.

New schools

I have worked extremely hard in Government with first Ruairi Quinn and now Jan O’Sullivan to ensure major investment in schools nationally and locally. In Dublin West, a number of new schools have opened and work is under way on several more. These include: Hansfield Educate Together primary and secondary schools; Gaelscoil an Chuilinn Tyrellstown; St Mochta’s Clonsilla; St Patrick’s Corduff; Le Cheile Tyrellstown; and Luttrelstown Community College.

Improved health facilities

A new primary care centre has opened on the Navan Road, to cater for residents in Navan Road, Ashtown and Pelletstown. This follows on from the brand new centre opened in Blanchardstown last year. Another new centre is planned for Corduff.

The need for Labour in Government:

Ireland is in a much better place than it was four years ago when Labour took office.

But the recovery is not yet secure.

We could be blown off course by international events beyond our control.

We could also be set back by domestic events which are within our control.

This country needs stable government and responsible management of the economy.

It needs parties in government who are willing to face up to the social challenges of our time.

Labour will continue to provide that stability and responsibility, working hard to secure the recovery and ensure that every person, family and community feels the benefits.

That is my commitment to the people of Dublin West.