Fianna Fáil TD for Donegal Charlie McConalogue has called on the Department of Social Protection to reverse its decision to cancel its weekly community welfare clinic in Moville. If the closure goes ahead, people in the Foyle area will be forced to travel to Carndonagh or Buncrana to meet with a Community Welfare Officer.
Deputy McConalogue commented, “The Department’s decision to axe the clinic in Moville is completely unacceptable and is the latest example of this Government’s dismissive attitude to rural Ireland. The clinic, which is held every Friday, provides an essential link between the local community and the district Social Welfare Office in Buncrana. If the service is discontinued people living in and around Moville will face long journeys if they want an appointment with a Community Welfare Officer.
“The Department has a duty to provide services which are accessible and convenient. At the moment weekly clinics are held in in Buncrana, Carndonagh and Moville providing a geographical spread across the peninsula and ensuring that people have access to a clinic within a reasonable distance of their home. In 2013, the clinic in Muff was suspended, forcing residents there to travel to Moville or Buncrana. Now they’re facing an extended journey as the Moville clinic is threatened with the same fate.
“I’m calling on the Minister to explain why this clinic is in the firing line. It provides important services to people, many of whom are going through a very difficult time in their lives, and it is cruel for the Department to add to their stress and anxiety, by forcing them to undertake unnecessary journeys to other clinics. There is a large demand for these services at the existing services and the closure of the Moville clinic will only increase delays at the other sites. This decision must be reversed”.