View Irish language version of this page JOIN US STAND UP DONATE


"SUSI are fighting orphaned students, Simon Harris left the debate early" - Tóibín

Aontú leader Peadar Tóibín TD today raised student nurses pay and SUSI issues in the Dáil. He has expressed his disappointment that Minister Harris left the chamber early and did not address the questions.


Deputy Tóibín said:


"Back in March when Simon Harris was Minister for Health he announced that student nurses would be paid for their work on the frontlines during the pandemic. But the student nurses and midwives have not been paid, they're being exploited, working long and difficult days for free. Today I wanted to ask the Minister when he will pay them, but he left the chamber before my contribution".


Deputy Tóibín continued: "Students these days seem to be getting a bad name, with one politician in the Seanad campaigning to call in the army to tackle students in the first week of the college year. Today in the Dáil I listed some of the fantastic students who've been in touch with me, students who are fighting for equality, students who have organised media and political lobbying campaigns. I'm thinking of students like Sonia, who has been on the phone to politicians and the media while studying and working on the frontline at the same time. A trooper of a campaigner. Another young man - Cian Gallagher - also a brilliant driven student of politics in UCD who has been heading up a campaign on the SUSI issue. Following on from Cian's campaign I sought to ask the Minister about the instances where SUSI grant a student funding before challenging that or threatening to take it back at a later date. The Minister unfortunately left the chamber early and did not address that question".


"Another student was in touch with me who was recently orphaned. This student had dropped out of college to care for his guardian during her illness. The college in question failed to inform SUSI of this, and SUSI continued to pay the college for his education. Upon applying this year SUSI told this grief stricken young man that he owed them thousands of euro. He hadn't seen a cent of this money, it had gone directly to the university. Surely SUSI should have asked the university to return the money, not the blameless student? At a time of recession we need to be working to keep students in education and in Ireland. Students are struggling like never before, they're calling TDs offices in tears. The system is too conservative, too strict, too harsh. We need a compassion approach and student-friendly system at this difficult time", concluded Deputy Tóibín

By Aontú Press | 20 November, 2020



Related Posts


The Irish political system is radically broken



In Ireland the vast majority of elected representatives put a finger in the air to check which way the political wind is blowing. They have one eye on their leaders – seeking brownie points – and another eye keeping their seat safe. If elected reps shut up and do as they’re told, they are promoted; if they stand up for what they believe in, they are demoted. No wonder we have the political class we have. No wonder a half a billion euro is being buried in a hole under the National Children’s Hospital and that Stormont is in stalemate.



Throughout Ireland, many people are now afraid to say what they feel, many are afraid to respectfully engage on a range of different topics. Many feel there is a new censorship and a new political correctness in Ireland, that opposition to the establishment is being deleted.



Respectful opposition is not the enemy. Respectful opposition is a critical element of a functional democracy. Aontú will have the backbone to stand up, without fear, for you.




STAND UP