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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Dream Cesarewitch for O’Briens

first_imgEl Salvador gave teenager Donnacha O’Brien a landmark big-race success in the Irish Cesarewitch at the Curragh. Press Association The treble was initiated when Royal Navy Ship came out on top in what is likely to prove a very strong Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden. A host of well-bred newcomers lined up for the seven-furlong contest, with O’Brien’s The Happy Prince taking them along through the early stages, with Five Claw in close attendance. The leader’s stablemate Royal Navy Ship (6-1) raced just in behind on the far rail and the War Front colt took over when getting a nice split a furlong and a half out. Although green when he hit the front, Seamie Heffernan’s mount kept on well, eventually having a length and a half in hand on another O’Brien runner, the 100-30 favourite Jacobean, who finished best of all down the centre of the track from the rear in the hands of Joseph O’Brien. O’Brien snr, who had four runners in the race, said: “I’m delighted with that fella. He was well drawn, while Joseph’s horse was badly drawn. It comes to a time of the year when they have to start, and there wasn’t much between three of ours coming here.” The younger brother of champion jockey Joseph O’Brien, the 16-year-old had only ridden his first winner last month but defied his inexperience with a fine ride on his father Aidan’s five-year-old, running in the colours of his mother Anne-Marie. Burdened with top-weight, O’Brien’s 7lb claim proved invaluable as Hidden Universe and Pat Smullen pressed hard through the final furlong, with El Salvador finding plenty for pressure and seeing it out for a length success at 25-1. Joseph O’Brien finished third on another Ballydoyle contender, Marchese Marconi, with Asbury Boss fourth. Aidan O’Brien, who was completing a treble, said: “I’m delighted and it’s great for Donnacha. It’s a hard race to win. He’s a tall fellow and is doing his leaving certificate this year. It was a nice, patient ride as the start was a bit messy and he was a long way back. “He was second in the Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot this year, and is a tough horse.” It was a fourth winner for the jockey and a second Irish Cesarewitch for O’Brien snr after Bright Horizon in 2010. Earlier there was a Ballydoyle victory with Together Forever, who had the best form on offer in the Listed Staffordstown Stud Stakes and obliged with the minimum of fuss. Sent off the 11-10 favourite and kept out of trouble on the outside by Joseph O’Brien, the daughter of Galileo was wound up to strike two furlongs out and asserted the further she went. Seamie Heffernan and Cocoon made it a one-two for the yard, three lengths behind. The trainer said, “She quickened up well, and Joseph feels she is more of a Guineas than an Oaks type. She has more speed than we were giving her credit for. Before she won her maiden at Gowran we were making too much use of her. “We will probably leave her alone now as she is going a bit hairy, but she is a filly to look forward to.” last_img read more

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