Written Answers. - Aoibhneas Refuge Funding.

Proinsias De Rossa

Ceist:

162 Proinsias De Rossa asked the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the Aoibhneas refuge for battered women, which provides services for the north side of Dublin, may have to close if adequate funding is not provided urgently; the proposals, if any, he has to ensure that the refuge does not close; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

I am very aware of the excellent work being carried out by Aoibhneas in assisting victims of family violence. Financial assistance is provided by the Eastern Health Board for the Aoibhneas Refuge. The allocation from the board in respect of the current year is £50,000 which represents an increase of 17.5 per cent over 1991. The allocation for 1992 was agreed by the board with Aoibhneas based on their financial circumstances and expected expenditure during 1992.

I understand that no indication has been given to the Eastern Health Board by Aoibhneas of any change in their financial circumstances since their discussions with the Board regarding their 1992 allocation. The Eastern Health Board have indicated to me that they would be available to discuss with Aoibhneas any unforeseen difficulties which may have arisen since their last meeting.