Fianna Fáil TD for Cork North Central, Billy Kelleher TD, says the ‘Cork City Profile 2014’ report is a wake-up for policy makers in Cork City Council and at Government level.
Deputy Kelleher said the report, which reveals that people on the Northside of the City have a higher chance of living in poverty or suffer from social depravation, requires an immediate response.
He commented: “This report is a huge wake-up call for policy makers both at City Council level and at Government level. The report shows the wide-scale depravation on the Northside of the city and reminds us all that steps must be taken now to address this.
“There must be a concerted effort made to invest in education across the Northside, a particular emphasis must be placed on the low uptake of third level education. Studies need to be conducted on how we can encourage more people into third level education. This needs to be a collaborative effort by Cork City Council and central Government. There also needs to be more emphasis put on access to employment and the provision of housing across the Northside. This is not going to be easy, but there must be a political will to change the outcomes for families living in poverty.
“The results of the study cannot be dismissed, the city is lopsided and more investment is required north of the river. I am calling on the Department of Environment to review its RAPID programme and take account of the inequality on the Northside of Cork City. The fact that unemployment is higher in all the RAPID areas of the city is a cause for huge concern, this needs to be looked at and revaluated.
“Cork City Council must now work closely with the Department of Environment to address the very serious issues raised in this report.”