I wish to raise the current position in relation to the Stardust Memorial Park. I am shocked and disappointed at the decision of the Department of the Environment not to make further funding available for the completion of the Stardust Memorial Park in Coolock.
In May 1991 discussion between the then Taoiseach, the Stardust Victims's Committee and Dublin Corporation concluded with a decision to construct a 25 acre park at Adare Road, Coolock, including a suitable memorial for the 48 victims who died, so tragically, in the Stardust fire in 1981. It was agreed that the project would be financed from national lottery funding and would involve two allocations of £100,000 in 1991 and 1992 and a further allocation of £50,000 in 1993. Dublin City Council fully supported the project and to date £100,000 has been provided to Dublin Corporation.
The Stardust Victims' Committee have fought a long and difficult battle. They lobbied to secure adequate compensation for the families of those killed and injured in the fire. They campaigned to ensure that the sensitive nature of the Stardust site itself would be respected at all times and they sought to make sure that another Stardust fire never happens. The last item on their agenda was the provision of a suitable memorial. It is totally unacceptable that the committee have had to fight every step of the way for their rights and for their entitlements.
I am extremely angry at the situation which has now developed. It is the worst of all possible worlds. Given that there is now a doubt that the project will be completed, it would have been better if it had never been initiated. The families have every right to feel upset and aggrieved at what has happened. Work undertaken at the site to date is now deteriorating and it would seem that public moneys have been wasted. I appeal to the Minister for the Environment to retrieve the situation at this stage and to make adequate funds available from the national lottery for the completion of the Stardust memorial park as soon as possible.
The families of the victims simply want to get on with their lives. They and the Stardust Victims' Committee are tired of fighting but are determined to achieve their final objectives. I fully support them in that regard.