Concerns over future of Pieta House Limerick service

first_imgEmail Print WITH four of Pieta House’s nine therapists in Limerick laid off since the Covid-19 lockdown began, staff have raised concerns about the mental health service’s future in the city.Pieta House has helped thousands of people in the Mid-West since it was first established a decade ago. The free counselling service, based at Ard Aulin in Mungret, focusses on those who are in suicidal distress or engaging in self-harm. Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up One Pieta House staff member, who wrote to the Limerick Post this week, claimed that the free therapy service may not continue in its current form into the future.“Compulsory redundancies of centre manager, clinical support staff and the letting go of sessional therapists, who are all the heart of Pieta House, will mean that Pieta as we know it will cease to exist,” they said.“The Sunrise Appeal has been a huge success and has raised in excess of €5 million.“Pieta receives more that €2m from the HSE every year and Health Minister Simon Harris announced last month an additional 114,608 per month to help Pieta save jobs.“Despite the success of the fundraising, approximately 50 per cent of staff have been let go with some still waiting for confirmation of further lay offs, which effectively will mean approximately 70 per cent of very experienced  staff will be let go.”The anonymous Pieta House staff member went onto accuse the service of being “disingenuous” for not making the staff and people of Ireland aware of what the service is going to look like in the future.They also raised concerns that given the current challenges with Covid-19 there may be many more deaths by suicide in the future. The onus, they believe, is now on Pieta House to provide the best possible support to ensure that they continue the work to prevent deaths by suicide. “Since December 2010 Pieta House has supported thousands of people of all age from groups from six years of age to people in their 70’s.  Pieta House has been there for people through the darkest moments in their lives. Many of whom would say, ‘I would not be alive today but for Pieta House’.“Last year Pieta House Mid-West witnessed a significant increase in U18’s accessing the service . Pieta House Mid-West is constantly stretched for resources and has always had waiting lists. I dread to think of what will happen in the future with the plan to restructure the service.”However, Pieta House revealed in a statement to the Limerick Post this week, that they are now in a very different position, based on the incredible public response to its Sunrise campaign, boosted by the Late Late Show the night before.“We had been facing an existential funding crisis and had been taking some difficult steps to deal with it. However, owing to the enormous generosity of the people of Ireland and their obvious care for those suffering with their mental health, coupled with some additional funding from the HSE for 300 additional hours for high risk clients per week, we are now able to review our position much more positively,” Pieta House stated.“We are in the middle of that process and hope to complete it within a couple of weeks. Our focus throughout is on meeting the significant demand for our services nationwide and there will be no downgrading of centres.”Pieta House also pointed out that it will be maintaining and potentially increasing its services to the public once the review is complete.“We are currently engaged in a consultation process with staff. There will be some re-deployment of personnel with the intention of putting as much resources as possible into the frontline and therapist hours. We are looking to employ more therapists directly, rather than on contract, and we have paused a reduction in therapist hours pending the outcome of the review.“In the meantime, we continue, during these restricted times, to deliver our services 24/7 by phone (1800 247 247) and text (51444) and we encourage anyone who is feeling anxious or is struggling with mental health issues at the moment to reach out and talk to Pieta. We are there for you.” Twitter Linkedin Advertisementcenter_img WhatsApp Facebook NewsCommunityConcerns over future of Pieta House Limerick serviceBy Alan Jacques – May 29, 2020 1276 Previous articleMore than €3 Million rental income to be refunded to University of Limerick on-campus residentsNext articleLkLadyPod #18 Sive: Why Do We Need Music Right Now? Alan Jacqueshttp://www.limerickpost.ielast_img read more

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Monday Agenda: New Ocean City Administrator Up for Approval

first_imgCity Hall in Ocean CityCity Council meets on Monday afternoon next week, and council will vote on a recommended replacement for retiring Ocean City Business Administrator Mike Dattilo.Mayor Jay Gillian announced last week that he would seek council’s approval to appoint James Mallon to the post.Council will vote on the appointment at its public meeting 1 p.m. Monday (Dec. 29) at City Hall. A resolution will ask council to waive the residency requirement for the position.The city’s administrative code does not require applicants for the top administrative position to live in Ocean City, but they must move to the municipality once they’re hired. The code does allow the city to waive the requirement by vote of council.Mallon, 46, lives in Buena Vista Township in western Atlantic County with his wife and two children.The resolution does not specify a starting salary for Mallon. Dattilo makes a base salary of $130,000 annually, according to state pension records.Mallon was first hired by Ocean City in 1994 in the Recreation Department. He stayed for eight years before moving on to public and private sector jobs in Pennsylvania. He returned to Ocean City to work as Community Services director from 2010 to 2013.After a short stint as municipal administrator in Pine Hill, Mallon returned this spring to Ocean City as an aide to Gillian.Mallon has a bachelor’s degree from Glassboro Universityand a master’s in public administration from Rutgers.City Council also will consider the following agenda items:Police Station Inspection: City Council will vote on paying Czar Engineering of Egg Harbor Township $10,000 for a “due diligence study” of the police station building. A former school, the century-old structure will be inspected for structural, safety and code-compliance issues. The study could be a precursor to a renewed effort to find an updated space for the department.Attics in Ocean City Homes Neighborhood: City Council will vote on the second reading of an ordinance that provides relief for the only single-family neighborhood in Ocean City with a six-foot attic height limit. The proposed measure would allow attic heights of nine feet and eliminate a requirement for a pull-down stair (without affecting overall building height requirements).Police Contract: The city apparently has reached a tentative agreement on a new four-year contract with Ocean City Policemen’s Benevolent Association Local No. 61. Details on labor agreements are typically not released until they are approved.Historic Grants: City Council will vote to accept three Sandy Disaster Relief Grants for Historic Properties from the New Jersey Historic Trust. The grants are for historic buildings that were damaged in the October 2012 Superstorm Sandy, including $501,000 for the Ocean City Transportation Center (10th and Haven), $143,031 for the U.S. Life Saving Station (Fourth and Atlantic) and $230,000 for City Hall (Ninth and Asbury).Appointments: City Council will vote to reappoint Jeffrey Frost to the Zoning Board, Edmond Speitel to the Ocean City Housing Authority, and Patricia Watts, Victor Plumbo and Martin Schlembach (first term) to the Aviation Advisory Board.See complete documentation for all agenda items below. Download (PDF, 8.64MB)__________Sign up for OCNJ Daily’s free newsletter and breaking news alerts“Like” us on Facebooklast_img read more

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