THE six border counties have some of the country’s highest rates of empty homes, medical card holders, pensioners, voter apathy and fewer jobs than anywhere else. New census data has highlighted some of the regional splits in lifestyles across Ireland with some of the most ssignificant differences affecting the half a million people living in Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, Louth, Monaghan and Sligo.
Many differences identified in the report are expected, such as low pupil class numbers in western counties and the highest employment rates, house prices and people with the most disposable income in Dublin. But some of the starker variations hit the border region, which has the lowest rate of jobs compared with the southeast counties which had the highest rate of unemployment at 19 per cent. In Dublin the rate of people in work in 2012 was highest at 62 per cent – 10 per cent higher than the worst affected border counties. The Regional Quality of Life report from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) compares lifestyle, housing, health, education and economic activity across the country.
Using census figures, the study recorded nearly four out of 10 people in the border counties have a medical card and no private health insurance compared with less than a quarter in Dublin, the mid-east and the mid-west. Two years ago, 14.5 per cent of all the houses in Ireland were lying empty with the highest vacancy rates in the border and west regions at 22 per cent and 20 per cent and 20 per cent, the report said. The worst effected counties were Leitrim and Donegal with rates of 30 per cent and 28 per cent. Counties along the west coast and Wexford also had rates above the 20 per cent mark while more than a third of homes in the midland and mid east regions were built between 2001 and 2011, compared to 22 per cent in Dublin. Throughout the state, 22 per cent of people finished their full-time education at 15-17 years of age, varying from over a quarter in the south east and border regions to under 20 per sent in Dublin.
The CSO report also identifed low voter rates with turnout in the border region for the children’s referendum as low as 28 per cent compared to 37 per cent in the capital. In all urban areas there were more women than men, whereas in all rural areas there were more men than women. But looking at the age of the population the CSO said that the west and border regions had a 20 per cent rate of people 65 and over compared with an overall proportion of 17.4 per cent in 2011. The highest proportion of persons living alone was in the 65 and over age group at 26 per cent. The border region had the highest proportion with 27 per cent of the people in this group living lone while the mid east at 23 per cent, had the lowest. Leitrim had the highest proportion of persons aged 65 and over living alone, compared to the lowest in Fingal. Outside of the main urban areas, Longford has one of the highest rates of foreigners and immigrants with 14.1 per cent of the county’s population non-Irish. Galway city, at 19 per cent, Fingal, at 18 per cent, and Dublin city, at 17 per cent, had the highest proportions of non-Irish nationals, while Donegal at 8.1 per cent had the lowest proportion.
With many thanks to : Ed Carty, Irish News.
- Dublin outstrips regions for quality of life (irishtimes.com)
- Under-45s hit ‘dramatically’ harder by recession, ESRI finds (irishtimes.com)
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Attacks not mentioned at secret meeting.
A HIGH-ranking member of MI5/MI6 met a UVF delegation just weeks after the Dublin and Monaghan bombings. Secret papers reveal that four men from the loyalist paramilitary group met with senior intelligence officer Michael Oatley aafter it had detonated bombs in Dublin and Monaghan in May 1974, killing 33 people.
Senior British government official James Allan also attended the meeting on May 27 at a house in Hollywood, Co Down, known as Laneside. A long-serving MI6 operator, Mr Oatley had strong contacts with both republican and loyalist groups througout the Troubles and is beleived to have been instrumental in the process that ultimatley resulted in the Provisional IRA calling its 1994 ceasefire. The UVF delegation comprised West Belfast man Ken Gibson, beleived to have been the leader of the UVF in 1974, and three other men who are named in the recently uncovered document. Laneside was regulary used by British officils as a discreet location to meet and hold talks with both loyalists and nationalist representatives in the 1970′s. Staffed by various Northern Ireland Office and British government officials, it was also used by officers of MI6, the international arm of the British Secret Services. Documents recentiy uncovered by the Pat Finucance Centre in Derry reveal that MI6 officials meet the four-stong UVF delegation ovef two days. The meetings took place less than two weeks after three UVF bombs exploded in Dublin and one in Monaghan as the Ulster Workers Strike was nearing an end. Despite this, no mention of the atrocities was made during the minutes.
Instead, in a summary of the meeting prepared by James Allan, it has emerged he was keen to protect senior UVF men from arrest. ” The UVF’s relationship with us has become very stange,” he said. ” They are desperately in need of advice as to how to achieve their aims of ensuring working class, and above all UVF participation in politics and they seek this even though they know that there are basic differences between them and HMG on the strike. ” Further, they are clearly worried that their position may be undermined by arrest of UVF leaders. (I beleive we should think very carefully before action is taken vis a vis UVF politicals and I should be greatful to have the opportunity to comment on possible arrest lists).” Two days later, on May 29, Ken Gibson and a second UVF man returned to Laneside for more talks. During these discussions it emerged that the UVF leaders claimed both they and former first minister, then leader of the DUP, Ian Paisley, now Lord Bannside, were supportive of talks with republicans.
The government summary of the meeting said : ” Despite their rough words in public politicians, including Rev Ian Paisley, were in favour of conversations with the IRA.” It would be more than three decades before the DUP leader finally went into goverenment with Sinn Fein at the Stormont assembly. The UVF men also revealed their support for the Price sisters, Dolours and Marian, who at the time were on hungerstrike in an English jail.”ThePrice sisters should be returned to Ireland as should loyalist prisoners like Billy Campbell held in Scotland,” reported James Allan. ” Mr Gibson suggested the loyalist leaders would probably start a ccampaign for the return of all such prisoners. ” Part of their aim in doing so would show solidarity with republicans.” Margaret Irwin from Justice for the Forgotten, a group that represents the families of those killed in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, said she was concerned about the files. ” The thing that is very disturbing is that the British government were considering not arresting UVF leaders especially coming in the wake of the bombings,” she said. ” It brings home the importance of the British government being up front in relation to undisclosed files.”
- The full files can be seen at
With many thanks to : Connia Young, Irish News.
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|It has been reported to the 32csm that members of the british army were observed exiting two helicopters in the townlands of Drumully and Connons in Co Monaghan a couple of miles outside Clones town on the Fermanagh/Monaghan border on friday of last week 20th of april, during this action residents in the area also reported what they deemed to be irish army helicopters in the same area the evening before. The 32csm want to know if the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs knew about this incursion in the 26 County Jurisdiction.Republicans in counties Fermanagh, Cavan and Monaghan have been aware of the PSNI/RUC patrols straying over the border on numerous occasions recently in the past number of years, and this latest incursion is another blatant affront to Irish Sovereignty in what has been described as a British Army incursion across the Co Fermanaghborder into Co Monaghan.The 32 County Sovereignty Movement would like to knowif this incursion has been sanctioned by the 26 County Administration as part of their war on Irish Republicanism and if so where does that leave their own claims to having sovereign integrity over their own jurisdiction and where does it leave their claims of neutrality given that a heavily armed occupation army and police force may be allowed to use their territory?||The 32 County Sovereignty Movement not alone condemns the military wing of the British governmentfor continuing these deliberate incursions but we also condemn the 26 County Administration’s failure to protect its sovereignty in 1998, 2009, 2010 and again now in 2012 when attacks on that sovereignty are ignored , encouraged or even facilitated.The 32csm in counties Fermanagh, Monaghan and Cavan would like to thank the public for bringing this british incursion into 26 county jurisdiction to our attention and we would ask the public to continue to contact your local 32csm of anymore incursions in the future.Fermanagh/Cavan 32csm
PRO: Sean Maguire
Coalisland, 12 Noon
Tyholland, 2PM (in assoc. with Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa Society & James Connolly Society Monaghan)
Monaghan, 3PM (in assoc. with James Connolly Society Monaghan)
Altmore, 5PM (in assoc. with Padraig Henry Pearse Society)
Donaghmore, 6PMEaster Sunday
Dungannon-Carland Road, 9.30AM
Edendork, 10.45AM (in assoc. with Thomas Clarke Society)
Galbally, 10.45AM (in assoc. with Padraig Henry Pearse Society)
Moy, 11AM (in assoc. with Liam MellowsSociety)Wreath laying-Castlefin 10.45AM
Doneyloop 11AM(in assoc. with Joseph Plunkett Society)
Aghyaran 12 Noon(in assoc. with Sean Mac Diarmada Society)
Loughshore wreath laying-starting at monument 1PM(in assoc. with Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa Society)
Armagh City, 1PM (in assoc. with Liam Mellows Society)
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