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Industrial action looming over Deer Lodge in Killarney




SIPTU has called on the Minister for Health to immediately investigate why two newly built, state-of-the-art buildings in the Kerry Mental Health Services area have been lying idle for the past two years.

These include the forty-bed purpose-built Deer Lodge in Killarney and a four-bed intensive care unit for mental health in Kerry University Hospital.

Deer Lodge will accommodate those presently resident in the O’Connor unit at the rear of St Finan’s Hospital as well as providing 10 beds for rehabilitation purposes. “The HSE has committed millions of euro to providing these buildings, which are necessary to deliver a progressive and modern mental health service in Kerry,” said Donie Doody, Killarney, branch organiser, SIPTU.

“However the HSE is undermining its own positive work by continuing to delay the opening of these buildings and allowing patients to remain in old dilapidated buildings which are no longer fit for purpose.”

In addition, hundreds of thousands of euro has been spent preparing residents in Cluain Fionnain, an intellectual disability unit in Killarney, for transfer into residences in the community, added Mr Doody. “This process has been ongoing for over two years with very little results to show. A number of outside agencies have been involved in the process and have cost the taxpayer needless sums of money with very little return,” said the SIPTU branch manager.

All staff presently employed by the HSE in Cluain Fionnain should be deployed back into the mental health services, according to SIPTU. “Nurses presently employed in Cluain Fhionnain are mental health nurses and are anxious to return to the mental health services,” said Mr Doody.

SIPTU has issued a deadline of May 31, 2017, by which time it wants its members re-deployed. “The HSE has already been afforded ample opportunity to complete this process,” said Mr Doody.

“It is our plan that the re-deployed nurses be used to staff the two new buildings currently lying idle. In the long-term this will save the HSE thousands of euro, provide an enhanced service to the people of Kerry and better facilities to service users accommodated in the new buildings. In the event that our deadline of May 31, 2017, is not honoured by the HSE, SIPTU has no option but to ballot its members for industrial action.

“The people of Kerry and the services users deserve better treatment than this. It is appalling that the facilities we have waited so long for, now built, lie idle and still outside the grasp of those who need them most.”

Above: Deer Lodge, Killarney.

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Lee Strand awarded Gold in Sustainability Programme

Lee Strand was recognised once again for their exceptional performance and commitment to sustainability with Gold Membership at the Origin Green 2022 awards. Origin Green is Ireland’s food and drink […]




Lee Strand was recognised once again for their exceptional performance and commitment to sustainability with Gold Membership at the Origin Green 2022 awards.

Origin Green is Ireland’s food and drink sustainability programme led by Bord Bia – The Irish Food Board. Gold Membership is awarded to companies who demonstrate an exceptional annual performance on their sustainability targets.

“We are delighted Lee Strand is recognised once again with the prestigious Origin Green Gold Membership for our commitment to sustainability,” Gearoid Linnane, CEO said.

“In Lee Strand environmental management and sustainability are key elements of our business model, from launching 100% renewable cartons, to reducing water usage and energy efficiency. This is a great achievement by our sustainability team who are continually striving for higher levels of environmental excellence. We would also like to thank Veronica Kennelly from the Munster Technological University who assisted Lee Strand in the development of our Origin Green plan.”

Origin Green continues to evolve to ensure Bord Bia is helping Irish food and drink companies to remain up to date with the evolving needs of trade customers and their consumers, globally. With the introduction of the Origin Green credits system in early 2022, it is now easier to identify members who are performing at a high level or excelling in their sustainability performance.

To retain ongoing membership of Origin Green, companies must subsequently submit an annual review to demonstrate clear progress against the established targets and initiatives set. This annual review is subject to an independent third-party review by their verification authority Mabbett. This ensures minimum programme requirements are consistently met and maintained. Companies receive credits for their performance in areas such as raw material sourcing; water and energy efficiency; waste reduction; packaging; and social sustainability. Origin Green has established five different membership tiers based on company size and turnover, so that a real diversity of industry is reflected in the overall Gold Membership.


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Shock at the death of “wonderful community activist”

There was a great sense of shock over the weekend when new of the death of Yvonne Quill, a Tidy Towns champion and wonderful community activist, became known. Yvonne, from […]




There was a great sense of shock over the weekend when new of the death of Yvonne Quill, a Tidy Towns champion and wonderful community activist, became known.

Yvonne, from Barleymount and formerly of the Cafe, College Street, passed away following a short illness on Friday. Requiem Mass takes place this morning (Monday) at 11am in The Prince of Peace Church, Fossa, followed by burial in Aghadoe Lawn Cemetery.

Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce President Niall Kelleher said she will be very fondly remembered as an incredibly dedicated woman, a strong personality who led by example and spearheaded the town’s Tidy Towns committee with such passion for over 25 years.

He recalled that her proudest day was when, as chairperson of the Killarney Looking Good Committee, she inspired Killarney to the prestigious overall national award in 2011 which had proved so elusive prior to that.

“Yvonne led by example and she never asked anyone to do something she wouldn’t do herself. You would seldom see her without the yellow bib, playing her part and showing us all what needed to be done to give Killarney the edge,” Mr Kelleher said.

“While winning the overall prize was something special, Killarney has never been far from the top and it has won a gold medal almost every year which is testament to Yvonne’s great ability to organise, her steely determination and her unrivalled ability to rally the troops,” he added.

The Chamber President also remembered her as a great businesswoman, a master baker and confectioner whose café on College Street was a must-visit for a whole generation of Killarney people and visitors.

“Yvonne Quill has left a great legacy in her home town. We thank her for what she has done, we’ll remember her incredible work ethic and we’ll ensure her name will live on in Killarney by continuing the commitment to the Tidy Towns initiative.”

Johnny McGuire, a member of the executive of Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce, who worked alongside Yvonne at the helm of the Tidy Towns committee, said she was a born leader who inspired the whole community and always led by example.

“Killarney would never have won the All-Ireland Tidy Towns award without her. She was the inspirational captain of the winning team. Yvonne worked night and day and, when it came to Tidy Towns, there was no downtime for her,” Mr McGuire said.

“Her commitment to the cause brought her into every school and every housing estate in Killarney. Working closely with the late Fr Michael Murphy, her great friend, Kathleen Foley, and others, they really put Killarney in contention for the top awards every year. The name Yvonne Quill was known and respected in Tidy Towns circles throughout the entire country – she really was a legend and everything she turned her hand to,
she succeeded. Killarney will miss her,” he added.

She will be deeply missed by her husband John, children Peter, Sandra and Sean, her son-in-law Peter, daughter-in-law Mairéad, grandchildren Anna, Jake, Ted, Abby and Luke, sister Angela Mulvey, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, and extended family, friends, neighbours and the community.

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