Written Answers. - Family Aid Refuge.

40.

asked the Minister for Health if he will explain the delay in the opening of the Family Aid Refuge in Rathmines as the building has been completed since June it is costing taxpayers money to have a £50,000 facility lying unoccupied and un-utilised and as services for the family and children at risk throughout the city are so inadequate.

I understand that the main reason for the delay in opening the new refuge for women and children at Rathmines is that Family Aid, who will run the refuge on behalf of the Eastern Health Board, are reluctant to move in until a telephone service is provided.

Bord Telecom have been unable to provide a service before this because of the need to provide essential engineering plant to serve the area. However within the last few days, Bord Telecom have notified the health board that they are now in a position to provide a telephone service. I expect, therefore, that arrangements will be made to open the premises as soon as the telephone has been installed.