Saincheisteanna Tráthúla - Topical Issue Debate

Mental Health Services

I am grateful for the opportunity to raise this particularly sensitive, urgent and pressing issue which has become more obvious as time goes by. I do not attribute blame to any particular individual, including the Minister or anybody else. Everything that could be done has been done and I acknowledge that there were difficulties during the past year due to Covid. However, needs must, and the emerging is situation very serious, first, from the point of view of parents of a child with severe sensory and emotional difficulties who cannot find a safe location where their child can receive in-house care and therapy. Many parents continually approach us who are at the end of their tether trying to deal with this on their own.

The next group is adolescents who have difficulties of a serious nature and it is again impossible to find a place for them. They may have eating disorders and be affected in various ways, and suffer from sporadic attacks over which they have no control. These unfortunate adolescents do not understand what is happening. This is happening around them and it is the life they live. It is their little world and, as it unfolds in front of them, it is not great. The problem is the services are not available to address the issues on time.

I refer to the next group of the older adolescents and young adults. They have mental health issues, but they do not have any experience of life. They do not know whether this is normal. They are where they are and they know it is not a happy place to be. Their parents stay with and try to help them in every way. Sadly, many of them end up in prison and are detained while awaiting a court hearing. I dealt with such a case in recent weeks. This is an appalling situation.

I reiterate that this is not the fault of the Minister of State. This goes back 20 years during which time there has been growing demand and a failure to address the issue on an ongoing basis because of other competing demands, which we all accept that. I ask the Minister of State to make a special effort to identify this cohort of people who are desperate, as are their parents and siblings, and unable to cope. The stress on the families and the individuals is significant and increasing. We have dealt with many cases where, due to the stress, the individuals harm themselves seriously or, worse, find an ultimate way out that does not solve any problem, but creates more.

We need to make a salutary move on this problem now. This cannot wait. We need to address the issues. I have only given a small number of examples but every Member will have multiple examples of the same experiences. Let us do whatever must be done to put in place the measures required to accommodate the needs of such patients and to recognise their difficulties for what they are, and to address the issues in a meaningful way. Let us do this now and give them hope for the future. Let us give them an indication that society cares for them and is prepared to help them in a meaningful way.

I thank the Deputy for raising this issue today. I am replying on behalf of the Minister of State, Deputy Butler.

We care, society cares and the Government cares. The continued development of specialist services for eating disorders, including improved access and shorter waiting lists, remain a key priority for the Government, the Minister of State with responsibility for mental health, Deputy Butler, the Department and the HSE. In response to the growth in the number of cases presenting to mental health services, the HSE developed a national clinical programme for eating disorders in partnership with the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland and Bodywhys, the national support group for people with eating disorders.

The eating disorder model of care was launched in 2018 and €5.7 million was allocated to date for the implementation of this programme. The clinical programme will establish an eating disorder network, including eight adult teams and eight child and adolescent mental health services, CAMHS, teams in total. Some €1.77 million has been invested to date in eating disorder specialist posts with 21.8 whole-time equivalent posts in place. It is of critical importance that the Minister of State secured the balance of €3.94 million to be made available to the programme, which will enable further investment in specialist posts throughout this year. This comprises the completion of the three existing specialist eating disorder teams and the establishment of three new teams. The three existing specialist eating disorder teams are located in CHO 4 CAMHS, CHO 7 CAMHS and CHO 6 adults. The three new teams in development include the adult teams in CHO 9, CHO 4 and the CAMHS team in CHO 2. Recruitment for all teams is progressing well and each CHO is fully committed to this process and is on target to have staff recruited by year end.

While there is much to be done, the progress made to date with existing teams has had a significant impact. In 2020, there was a 43% increase in the number of eating disorder assessments compared to 2019, with twice as many people starting treatment. This trend continued in 2021. Specialist outpatient treatment has been found to be the most effective and fastest way for most people with eating disorders to recover.

More than 90% of people with eating disorders can be supported in the community, avoiding more serious inpatient treatment. However, a small number of people may require inpatient care for short periods for structured refeeding and stabilisation. Inpatient care is currently provided in the four regional CAMHS units across the country. Linn Dara and Merlin Park have dedicated six and eight beds respectively, and while there are no dedicated beds in the remaining two CAMHS units, all beds are available to eating disorder admissions. A further eight beds are planned for an eating disorder unit in the national children's hospital.

I am aware that the Minister of State, Deputy Butler, recently visited the CAMHS eating disorder teams in Dublin and Cork to get an understanding of how the service operates on the ground. Adults who require inpatient care are admitted to local general adult approved centres. CHO 6 has three dedicated beds for eating disorders based in St. Vincent's University Hospital. The number of adult beds will increase, including an additional three beds in St. Vincent's, five in north Dublin, five in Galway and five in Cork. These beds will be linked to eating disorder hubs. Significant enhancements have also been achieved in the area of digital supports for people with eating disorders.

In March 2020, the free national clinical programme for eating disorders and Bodywhys application was launched. Telehealth has rapidly been enhanced and existing service users can access specialist eating disorder teams, who are providing ongoing care throughout the pandemic. More than 500 therapy sessions have been delivered to date. The development of all aspects of mental health services, including specialist services for eating disorders, continues to be a priority for Government, the Minister of State, the Department and the HSE. This is reflected in the current programme for Government and our national mental health policy.

I thank the Minister of State for her extensive reply on behalf of her colleague. I accept that the Minister of State is doing everything possible and is very active on the ground. As we all know in this House, no matter how active someone is, some things get away from him or her. Often, if things are supposed to work a certain way, it does not necessarily follow that they work that way. Another complication for young adults and adults is if they have an addiction. If they have an addiction, they will not be taken by most places. They have to seek treatment for that. People have to take time out to get treatment first, otherwise they will not get accommodation at all. This is crazy. I do not blame the Minister of State. The exigencies within which we work are ridiculous and they do not address the significant challenges in front of us.

I know of one case where an individual is in prison because he has a mental problem. He got into a situation where he broke the law, as has happened many times in the past and will happen in the future. The sad part of it is that he will probably receive a prison sentence, having done nothing else wrong but being unable to access treatment for his condition. That is a recent issue and there are numerous other such incidents. We all have to join parents at night, sometimes as late as midnight, where they have been waiting all day, or for two or three days, to gain access. It is challenging all the way. I compliment the Minister of State on the work that has been done but there is a need to poke the bear more, identify the snags, and ensure, whatever is being done now, that efforts are redoubled in a way that brings the necessary treatment within the reach of parents, siblings and all of the families of those affected.

The continued development of a special service for eating disorders, including improved access and shorter waiting lists, remains a key priority for the Government, the Minister of State, Deputy Mary Butler, the Department of Health and the HSE. As stated, €3.94 million is available to the national clinical programme for eating disorders and will enable further investment in specialist posts throughout the year. Only last night, the Minister of State acknowledged in the House that there is a fundamental flaw with regard to waiting lists, which is the recruitment process. It takes 50 weeks to recruit a person into a post. She was successful in securing the funding but the funding is only as good as the people when they arrive through the doors of their units. I have announced a lot and re-announced what the Minister of State has committed to, but until the people arrive in the posts, we will not see that service delivered or any relief whatsoever for those families, no matter what age they are presenting at, whether they are looking for support at local hospitals or from CAMHS teams. I listed a number of CHOs but I notice that Deputy Durkan's CHO was not included. It needs to be addressed at a local level.

There is not a Deputy in this Parliament who has not been impacted by dual diagnosis. We all know that when people have mental health issues, there is always something else coupled with it and there is usually an underlying condition. It breaks out in other formats, whether drinking, drugs or antisocial behaviour. There needs to be understanding and empathy but we need to look at dual diagnosis. When the Deputy talks about poking the bear, I think that we have the right Minister of State in the right role to do that.

Food Industry

I am glad of this opportunity to offer my commiserations and sympathies, and those of my constituents, to Glenisk, the Cleary family, their staff and their suppliers, as a result of the devastating blow inflicted on them by a major fire at the plant on Monday. I thank the staff for ensuring that everybody got out safely and the emergency services for the quick response and the manner in which they dealt with the issue. I met with Vincent Cleary and other staff at the site yesterday. They are shaken but resolute and resilient, as they have proven previously. It is a popular company and family. It is professional in the way in which it has grown the business to be world-renowned. It is a leader in its own field in the promotion of dairy and organics. It was in that field long before many others could even spell the word. It has acted as a mentor to many other people in my constituency and beyond. It is now time for that to be reciprocated in this hour of need for Glenisk and the Clearys. I was initially very proud of the reaction that I have seen in the community, locality and constituency, being the faithful people that we are, and even beyond that, nationally and internationally, and heard in the floods of support across the divide in the business sector.

I spoke with the Taoiseach's office yesterday. I know he has made contact with the company and managing director, ensuring them that the State will make every effort to assist in their hour of need. I use this opportunity to ask the Minister of State to assure me, the company and, by extension, our constituents, that the Government through its State authorities, the relevant Departments, whether the Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Agriculture, Food and the Marine, or Housing, Local Government and Heritage, which deals with planning, will ensure that arms of the State immediately come to the assistance of this company and provide it with every sort of help, assistance and expertise that is necessary for it to rebound and regain its place as a world-renowned company.

I concur with what has been said by the previous speaker. This is a significant blow in the local area. The Deputy referred to County Offaly. There will also be a significant effect in County Laois, since there is an effect on the workforce. Almost 90 people were working in that business. It is a sustainable business, with long-serving staff, some of them with up to three decades of service, on the Laois-Offaly border. Glenisk is a strong brand. Anybody who likes yoghurt will know that. It is a sustainable brand. It is an organic, quality product. It has been built up over a long time. In fairness to the company, it is still taking milk supplies but 50 farmers are dependent on this plant as well. It is important to the local economy. Unfortunately, that business which has been built up over three decades is a burnt-out shell now and there is not even a phone line going into it. I spoke to somebody from the company yesterday. To say that they are shocked would be an understatement. The loss of 90 jobs in this area is the equivalent of 900 in Dublin. The Minister of State will be aware of that. I would have thought this was a matter for the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, whom I acknowledge is out of the country.

I welcome that the Minister of State is present because he represents the constituency and he knows what myself and Deputy Cowen are talking about and how important it is. The company wants to rebuild and that will take time. I contacted the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment yesterday, like the previous speaker, urging it to engage with the company and the managing director, Mr. Vincent Cleary. I heard him on the radio early yesterday morning when I was coming here and he said he hoped to have a preliminary plan in place by mid-morning. That shows the kind of energy that they have put into the company over the years to drive it and build it. We need to provide each and every support we can to this company and to the work force.

I have been asked to take this on behalf of the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment who cannot be here this morning. I thank Deputy Cowen for raising this important issue in the Tullamore-Killeigh area of County Offaly, as it relates to a long-standing business there. I also acknowledge Deputy Stanley for raising the matter, which affects the Laois side of the constituency because Killeigh is quite close to the county boundary.

It was a shock to all of us to learn of the fire at the Glenisk yogurt factory in Killeigh on Monday, 27 September. Thankfully, there was no loss of life and the company and its staff must be commended on their swift action and adherence to their fire safety protocols in achieving this. Glenisk is a long-established business in the midlands and Offaly. It was started in 1987 by Jack and Mary Cleary and has been continued by the family. Vincent Cleary is now a very active managing director of the business. It has approximately 90 loyal staff, many of whom have been there for more than 20 years, and it has 50 suppliers of organic milk and it is also important that be maintained.

Glenisk is a long-established client of Enterprise Ireland, an agency of the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment. I am informed by officials in the Department that Enterprise Ireland have been in contact with the company following the fire. The company is assessing the damage at present, and Enterprise Ireland has indicated that the company will have the full support of the agency as its rebuilds and recovers. That is the most important thing that I can say today, namely that State agencies will assist in every way because Glenisk is a brand leader, not only locally but internationally, including across the EU. Deputy Cowen mentioned other State agencies that could play a role. He also mentioned planning issues and I will come back on that. My Department is clear on what has to be done and the Government will do that through Enterprise Ireland and the Department.

Job losses were mentioned. I hope there are no job losses at the end of this. It was a shock but the Cleary family is determined to get business up and running in Glenisk as soon as possible. I was very encouraged by their early remarks, after they recovered from the shock, about regrouping and rebuilding. That is the spirit that has brought them this far and I know it will continue into the future.

For those not familiar with the business, the company operates in the competitive landscape of high-end, premium organic yogurt, competing with Danone brands, Activia and Liberté, and with Yeo Valley but possess a powerful brand image within Ireland and the UK. The company is recognised for their premium, clean label, organic cow's milk yogurt and goat's milk dairy. The company have taken action in respect to their climate footprint and has a strong focus on sustainability. In the past 12 months it has removed close to 90 tonnes of plastic from its packaging and can now describe its packaging as carbon neutral.

I am informed that Glenisk is currently Ireland's largest manufacturer of branded yogurt with a turnover of in excess of €27.5 million, an Irish market share of 15% and employs in the region of 90 people. The company has also taken positive action in light of the uncertainties relating to Brexit and the EU UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement, TCA. Glenisk has refocused its company's market diversification strategy towards continental Europe to mitigate the significant risk associated with over-reliance on the Irish market. It has a high market share and I encourage the company to continue its work to increase its market share throughout Europe.

I thank the Minister of State for reaffirming what the Taoiseach said on the floor of the House yesterday on behalf of the Government that this will be acted upon. When I talk about other Departments and authorities responsibility, I am mindful of the professional commitment made as early as yesterday by the company. Its commitment to its community and excellence will be maintained. I am sure it will be done at a facility that is commensurate to the company and will be rebuilt as soon as is practicably possible. To that end I hope that the local authority will work hand in glove with the company to ensure that every pathway is cleared to ensure that happens efficiently and quickly according to the wishes of the Cleary family. To do that, they may have to go through a planning process. I had hoped the planning reform Bill this year might include something for families who find themselves in such a bind and that a pathway for planning might be more readily available than the one they have to travel. For example, this might meet with the disapproval of the likes of An Taisce, which has held up the Glanbia plant in Belview for the past five years. This are my thoughts, fears and concerns.

I welcome the response about State agencies and particularly the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment. That is essential. I also urge that the Department of Social Protection provide a liaison because there are 90 households without an income today and this week. Everything is destroyed, including offices. Those people will need every assistance in the short term and hopefully the company can get back up and running again.

Glenisk is exactly the kind of company that we want in Ireland. It is a local company providing a service locally, providing jobs using local products. We talk a lot about the green economy but this is the green economy in action: organic yogurt, sourced locally, with low carbon miles. The Minister of State outlined the work that it has done in waste reduction. It ticks all the boxes. We spend a lot of time attracting companies. That is good, we should continue doing that and I am all for foreign direct investment where we can get it but here is a company on our doorstep. The will is there as is the workforce. We must move heaven and earth. We in this House have an obligation to provide our support for that and to encourage the Government, its Departments and their officials to leave no stone unturned to get this company back up and running. I want to emphasise and encourage the role of the Department of Social Protection. These workers need help in the short term and I encourage that if it can be given.

Deputy Cowen mentioned that the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine should have a role as well as the local authorities in assisting in every way. I am quite sure there will be absolute determination in all Departments, including that my Department and Enterprise Ireland will assist.

On Deputy Stanley's comments, as I mentioned earlier, it is hoped there will be no job losses as a result of this occurrence but there may be some short- or medium-term issues to be dealt with. The employment services and State agencies, including Intreo, will give top priority as soon as necessary.

Glenisk has been to the forefront in sustainable reduction, green energy and carbon offsetting and assisted by various supports from Enterprise Ireland over the past decade. It has won many awards for its environmental efforts and activities, including for recycling and heat recovery. As part of the Origin Green programme, Glenisk has also implemented a mandatory emissions reduction target throughout its supply chain, not just in its own plant. That includes right down to farm level and we mentioned the milk suppliers earlier.

I understand that the key priority for the company and the family in the past few days has been to get the milk processing unit back up and running, so that the organic cow’s milk and organic goat’s milk can be packaged and back on the shop shelves as soon as possible. However, the yoghurt processing plant will involve a more difficult process to get up and running, because they have to talk to the suppliers of the machinery and their materials suppliers. There is, therefore, a possibility that some of it can move immediately to the supermarket and the shop shelves. However, the yoghurt processing plant is the difficult part of the process. At least the milk will continue to be collected. It may have to be processed temporarily somewhere else in the short term. However, I assure the Deputies that I will continue to work with all stakeholders to examine any potential future appropriate assistance. They should keep in contact directly with the Office of the Taoiseach to make sure every arm of the State provides all necessary support.

Forbairt Calaí agus Céanna

Tá mé buíoch den Aire Stáit as ucht teacht isteach anseo ar maidin. Táimid ag caint ar sheanscéal anseo ar na hoileáin, sé sin, an fhadhb a bhaineann le céibheanna nach bhfuil feiliúnach ar chor ar bith don saol atá ann anois agus don aimsir atá againn anois. Tá an cheist seo thar a bheith práinneach. Tá sé spéisiúil mar idir 1997 agus 2010 ceadaíodh luach €100 milliún de thograí caipitil ar na hoileáin ach ó 2010 i leith go 2021, níor ceadaíodh aon togra os cionn €1 milliún. Tá éigeandáil ann dá bharr sin.

Tógfaidh mé Inis Oírr i dtosach. Fríothadh cead pleanála ansin i 2008. I 2015, díreach roimh an toghchán a tháinig i dtús 2016, cuireadh airgead isteach i Meastacháin na Roinne ach ó thaobh tógála de, níl aon airgead ceadaithe fós do chéibh Inis Oírr agus níl aon obair tosaithe. Tá gá anois le bogadh ar aghaidh. Tá contúirt ollmhór ar an gcéibh seo mar atá sé i láthair na huaire agus is é grásta Dé nár maraíodh aon duine ann. Molaim don Aire Stáit dul isteach go dtí an t-oileán ar an mbád sa gheimhreadh. Rinne mise é go minic agus rinne mé uair amháin nach ndéanfaidh mé dearmad air choíche, nuair a bhí inneall an bháid ag imeacht ar an gcéibh ag iarraidh an bád a choinneáil socair le go rithfinn agus an bheirt eile a bhí ar an mbád isteach ar an gcéibh. Tuigim anois go bhfuil ceadúnas imeall trá á lorg. Ba cheart don Roinn Tithíochta, Rialtais Áitiúla agus Oidhreachta tosaíocht a thabhairt dó seo mar obair agus gan a bheith ag déanamh leithscéalta go bhfuil rudaí eile ar na bacáin acu.

Maidir le hInis Meáin, rinneadh obair mhór ar chéibh an Chaladh Móir sna 2000anna agus ag an am ba é an togra céibhe oileáin ba mhó a ceadaíodh go dtí sin. Tuigeadh ag an am a tógadh é go raibh pas 2 agus 3 le déanamh i gcónaí agus dá bharr seo tá an bád lasta fós ag dul ag céibh na Cora. An fhadhb atá le céibh na Cora, go simplí, ná gur maraíodh beirt ar an gcéibh sin, ag amanna éagsúla de bharr maidhmeanna. I gcás amháin bhris an rópa a bhí ag ceangal an bád le céibh agus i gcás eile bhí fear ag seasamh ar an gcéibh agus scuabadh isteach san fharraige é le maidhm mhór a tháinig isteach.

An fhadhb atá le réiteach anseo ná go gcaithfear a rá le Comhairle Contae na Gaillimhe cén cineál airgead atá ar fáil don chéibh seo. An bhfuil €50 milliún ar fáil nó an bhfuil €20 milliún i gceist? Go dtí go mbeidh an t-eolas sin curtha ar fáil, ní féidir céibh a phleanáil mar ní fiú céibh a phleanáil nach bhfuil an t-airgead le bheith ag an Roinn di. Táimid ag dul anonn agus anall ar an gceist seo. An bhféadfadh an Roinn buille faoi thuairim a thabhairt do lucht pleanála na céibhe? Is Coláiste na hOllscoile i gCorcaigh atá ag déanamh na modhanna agus an chomhairle contae atá ag déanamh na hoibre pleanála. Cén cineál buiséad atá ag an Roinn leis an gcéad chéim eile a dhéanamh ar an gcéibh seo?

An bhfuil cóip ann den fhreagra?

I apologise that I do not have written copies of it, but it should on the way. I apologise for supplying the answer as Béarla.-----

I have no problem with that but I do not know if the simultaneous translation is available.

I apologise that I do not have it at the moment. I will carry on-----

Tá a fhios ag an Leas-Cheann Comhairle na fadhbanna atá leis sin.

Ní fheicim aon rud anseo. Bíonn muid ag caint air ach ní bhíonn sé ar fáil.

We are trying to clarify where is the translation system that should be available.

Should I proceed or wait?

Keep going, because if the Minister of State waits for the translation system, he will be waiting.

I will proceed. Sustainability of communities on the islands is a fundamental objective of the Government, as set out in its Our Rural Future: Rural Development Policy 2021-2025. Inherent in the support for sustainability is the requirement for the provision of safe access to the islands for ferry passengers, fishermen and women and other recreational users of the harbours. As the Deputy will be aware, the relevant local authorities are responsible authorities for maintenance and development of infrastructure on the islands. To that end, the Department of Rural and Community Development provides financial support to the local authorities for priority projects. To address safety issues affecting piers on Inis Oírr and Inis Meáin, the Government included development of these two harbours among capital projects identified in the Project Ireland 2040 plan. The Department of Rural and Community Development is now progressing these, in conjunction with Galway County Council. A development committee comprising representatives from the Department, Galway County Council and PUNCH consulting engineers was established and it has been meeting regularly to monitor progress.

With regard to Inis Oírr pier, the Department has approved the business case and Galway County Council is in the process of resolving a number of pre-construction issues prior to issuing a draft tender for their development. These issues include application for a foreshore licence for the works on the island, completion of environmental reports for an appropriate assessment and preparing the compulsory purchase order, CPO, applications. The timetable has been discussed by the development committee providing for a tendering process of approximately nine months, after which construction will advance in stages. The finalised plan is likely to take several years to complete, taking account of the weather and sea conditions.

With regard to Inis Meáin, the business case is still in development with Galway County Council. The Department has provided advice to the council in this regard. The proposed design of Inis Meáin harbour and pier will be informed by modelling work being carried out by the National Maritime College of Ireland in Cork. The Department has funded this work and, at a meeting in July, skippers had an opportunity to test the initial release of the model. This proved very informative for both skippers and the council engineers. A further iteration of the model is being developed. Once the modelling has been completed and its impact on design of the pier fully understood, the business case can proceed for approval.

We need to stress that planning permission was given. It is the same operable planning permission for Inis Oírr in 2008. This is 2021 and I have to stress that this pier is incredibly dangerous, because of overtopping and because boats cannot tie up safely in the severe winter weather. I ask the Minister of State to clarify whether after getting the foreshore licence it will take nine months to do the tendering. Has he a timeline for when he expects contractors on site? The fastest thing in construction nowadays is the building. Even though that might take two years, at least one can go down every week and see the progress. Can the Minister of State give a timeline to the people of Inis Oírr as to when it is expected construction will commence on the pier?

Regarding Inis Meáin, the Minister of State mentioned the skippers. The skippers are hugely important because they bring in the boats. However, another group seems to be getting overlooked here and they are important for two reasons.

I refer to the islanders themselves. The first reason is that they live there. The second is that fishing in those waters has given them an incredible wealth of knowledge of the seas around their island. The islanders have made and keep making one point. They have made it to the Minister of State's colleague, the senior Minister in the Department, Deputy Heather Humphreys. The islanders believe it is vital that some indication is given to everybody regarding the funding available. Are we talking about €50 million or €100 million? There is no point in just saying funding is available, because that would be like telling someone to design a house without giving any indication of the budget. It is as foolish as that, and anybody who did that would be very foolish indeed. The issue, then, is whether the Department can give everybody concerned some indication of the potential budget for them to work off. That would allow for the maximum impact, because whether the project involves digging in or working out into the sea will depend on how much money there is to spend.

I acknowledge and reiterate that this issue is very high on the agenda of the Minister. We do talk about it and she is aware of the urgency to move on this project. I acknowledge as well the long history of this issue and how long it has been going on for, as outlined by Deputy Ó Cuív. Funding has been needed for some time. The Deputy has been a long-time advocate in this regard and he has raised this matter many times. I wish I could give him tighter and clearer timelines. The tender is being prepared. The best I can do is to tell the Deputy we want to get the tender issued and to see it out as soon as possible. The only decent timeline I can provide for the Deputy is that the tendering process will take approximately nine months. I know that is not what the Deputy is looking for.

On that basis, we will not have the pier in 2022 and we are talking about 2023. I am just trying to get clarity.

I understand what the Deputy is looking for, but I cannot provide the clarity and certainty he is seeking this morning.

The Minister of State is giving a good indication that it will not happen before 2022.

I wish I could give that certainty.

I thank the Minister of State and I appreciate that.

I acknowledge the risks the Deputy has outlined concerning the situation on the piers. I will bring back this matter to the Minister and we will endeavour to get more detail for the Deputy. I apologise that I cannot give a more precise timeline for the start of the tendering process this morning.

That is the end of this Topical Issue debate. Maidir leis an gcóras, ní raibh a fhios agam nach raibh na cluasáin ag feidhmiú. Tá ceist curtha agam.

Ní féidir glacadh leis sin. Ní raibh a fhios agam agus tiocfaidh mé-----

Níl aon chluasáin ann.

Tuigim. Tá sé ráite agam anois ach ní raibh a fhios agam é sin. Tiocfaidh mé ar ais ag an Teachta agus ag an Dáil maidir leis an gcóras aistriúcháin.

Go raibh maith agat.

Sitting suspended at 9.53 a.m. and resumed at 10.00 a.m.