Press release: Issued by Clare Public Participation Network, Thursday 26th October, 2023
Invitation to launch of ‘Fair Clare: Securing Socio-economic rights and a just transition in County Clare’ 7pm, November 6th, Templegate Hotel, Ennis.
Communities in Clare at risk of an unjust transition, report finds.
‘We can’t rely on people’s goodwill one more time, what we need are resources’
A ground breaking research project examining the ongoing and likely future effects on Clare communities of the transition to net zero carbon emissions has found that there is a risk of ‘an unfair transition in the county’ unless measures are taken to address this. The report: ‘Fair Clare: Securing Socio-Economic Rights and a Just Transition in Clare’ is jointly authored by Kieran Harrahill and Roisin Greaney both from TASC – Think Tank for Action on Social Change who conduced a series of workshops with a wide range of communities in the county over the course of this summer.
The report will be launched at a free event on Monday, November the 6th at 7 pm in the Templegate Hotel, Ennis. Tickets must be booked in advance at this link https://bit.ly/3FvX7B4 or by calling Clare PPN on 087-1617375 during office hours.
The report can be read in full at this link and the beautiful artist designed print copies will be available on the night for those attending the launch: http://bit.ly/45PChHA
Groups who participated in the lively discussion sessions for the project included those perceived to be at risk from climate action: low income farmers, and other people on low incomes in rural areas including single parents, older people, people with disabilities, single parents, carers and others. Dedicated workshops were held with men from the Traveller community and with people who have come here seeking protection as a result of war in Ukraine and with people living within the international protection system in Clare. The workshops were held in a range of Clare towns – Kilrush, Ennistymon, Shannon, Scariff, Ennis and Killaloe and covered a wide range of topics with everything from turf to tourism coming under scrutiny.
Sarah Clancy part of the Clare PPN team who oversaw the project observed ‘This report is not designed to sit on a shelf, it contains real issues and proposals to solve them gathered from ordinary people some of whom are living in very difficult circumstances around the county. We are launching it now in advance of three forthcoming election cycles- the local and EU elections in 2024, and the General Election which could happen at any time now and we want to make its recommendations part of every existing and would-be politicians policy platform whatever party they are with’.
The striking artist designed report builds onwards from Clare PPN’s previous work which examined poverty in Clare, and also makes for stark reading. Communities ranked housing and health as their key and urgent concerns alongside cost of living issues and with many expressing their worries about the care available for themselves, family members and others. This report doesn’t stop there however – it makes 27 recommendations for local and national policy makers on how some of these issues can and should be addressed in ways that tackle climate action and poverty reduction at the same time. Suggestions include developing an innovative a social enterprise incubator, that the Local Authority itself should adopt ‘community wealth building’ as its approach, that the national retrofit schemes no-cost plans should be extended to low and middle income households, that existing farm supports should be tailored to local needs and landscapes and it calls for the establishment of local information and help centres, community development projects and a suggests that a trade school should be established in an area of deprivation.
Padraic Hayes, a Shannon based steering committee member for this project said ‘We’re really proud of this work and the fact that it has been developed directly by groups of people who are affected by poverty and discrimination in our communities. One of the main things we’ve learned is that if we can improve the services needed by those of us who are worst off, that actually everyone benefits.’
The project itself was commissioned by four local organisations working together: Clare County Council, Clare Local Development Company, Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board and Clare Public Participation Network and was funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development under the dormant accounts fund and many of its findings have been fed into Clare’s draft Local Economic and Community Plan.
For more information or comments, please contact:
Sarah Clancy 086 384 0973 / email@example.com
NOTES FOR EDITORS:
A PDF of the report is available to download at this link:
Clare PPN is a network of community, voluntary, environmental and social inclusion groups from Clare. Its purpose is to ensure that the diverse voices and expertise of community groups in Clare are brought into Local Government policy making. www.clareppn.ie