/ about Cllr Dermot Lacey

Cllr Dermot Lacey

Representing Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council
Dermot Lacey is a Labour Party Councillor for the Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council. Dermot has been a member of Dublin City Council since 1993, and lives in Beech Hill, Donnybrook.
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 / Cllr Dermot Lacey ƒ Representing Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council

Speaking at the launch of the family Support Workers Network

“I am glad to be here at what is an important occasion for Family Support Network.

Clearly this is a difficult time for all us involved in the response to the Drugs crisis. That is as true for those of us on the Task Force as it is for community groups and people such as the Family Support Workers who, among many others, are on the frontline on this issue.

The truth, however, is that we are all in this together and we need to work together – that is why, despite some difficulties, I wanted to come along this evening.

As you are all probably aware our Task Force is made up of representatives from the Statutory, Community, Voluntary and Political sectors, with an Independent Chairperson. As Chairperson I have no vested interest in any of the groups whom we support but try to do what is best for the overall provision of services in this area. I know that I share that objective with the other members.

One of the great privileges of serving as Chairperson is that I have had the opportunity to work with so many good people.

In particular I am immensely proud of the diligent and concerned manner in which the representatives of the Community Sector have worked so hard towards securing the best possible outcome in our recent Budget considerations. In difficult times they were prepared to take difficult decisions. It is not easy to take responsibility for expenditure cuts in your own community but they knew and I know that the alternative was worse.

Our choice was simple, if not very pleasant. Following confirmation of another Budget cut from central Government for next year we could have adopted a simple “across the board” swinging ten per cent reduction which could have closed down many projects altogether or we could, as we did, thoroughly analyze the entire Budget and see how we could use our reduced funding better. The alternative was that unaccountable Civil Servants and people with no interest or commitment to this community would impose cuts on us, without any consultation.

You did not cause the Financial Crisis facing our Country and to be frank nor did I. I opposed the policies that led to our present status and campaigned actively to have those policies changed. But I also live in the real world and have real responsibilities. That includes responsibility to manage the outcome of the crisis in so far as it affects our work as best I can.

In that respect I appeal for your assistance. Indeed I need your assistance. We can only get through this by working together.

Working together is the very essence I presume of this new Network. In your own words it is about “creating a better service provision for families affected by drug use”. I hugely appreciate and value the work undertaken to date. I believe that the Network has a really important role to play in maximising services to families affected by drug use. The Network will get every support it can from me and the South Inner City Task Force in your work.

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