Sinn Féin reps on hand to provide practical assistance during Coronavirus restrictions – Carthy
Cavan Monaghan Sinn Féin TD, Matt Carthy, has said that he and other Sinn Féin representatives remain on hand to provide any practical assistance during the period of Coronavirus restrictions. While party offices will remain closed to the public for the time-being Deputy Carthy urged members of the public to get in touch by phone or email if they need any supports.
Acknowledging that the past week has been unprecedented the Sinn Féin representative confirmed to the Northern Standard that his work as a TD continues and, in the first instance, that means being a voice for his constituents.
Deputy Carthy said:
“This past fortnight was been tumultuous and strange for our communities, for many it has been a worrying time. Since the 2nd March, when we had to cancel at the last minute, the Sinn Féin public meeting due to be held in Cavan that evening, our party have made contingency plans to prepare for the restrictions that we have since seen.
“Once our party leader, Marylou McDonald, called on the government to move to close schools and cancel public gatherings we knew that we would have to lead by example and close our offices to the public. That was put into effect since last Thursday morning.
“While our offices are closed, phonelines do remain operational (Monaghan 047-82917 and Carrickmacross 042-9674001) and emails are checked regularly (firstname.lastname@example.org); we have dealt with hundreds of enquiries over the past week and expect that work to continue”.
Carthy confirmed that the Sinn Féin negotiations team, of which he is a member, continues to meet albeit via conference call facilities. He says he is in regular contacts with several government departments primarily now regarding Coronavirus related issues but also ongoing representations which also need to be addressed.
“Over the course of the last week I have, for example, been in contact with the Minister for Children on behalf of Childcare providers and their staff. Some departments are better than others at responding quickly and, we know, all are under immense pressure. But, peoples livelihoods are in the balance, several people have lost their jobs overnight or took a huge cut in hours, businesses are worrying whether they’ll ever reopen. Therefore, it is the job of elected representatives to bring all of these concerns to government and statutory agencies and it is their role to put minds at ease as speedily as possible.
“As a father I know that everyone’s first interest is ensuring the health and safety of their families. Communities in Co. Monaghan are to be commended for their adherence of the official advice so far. Those workers who have remained on duty – whether they be in our local authority and other statutory bodies, in utility companies or in the retail sector ensuring we can access food and other essentials – each deserve great credit, they are the reason we’ll get through this. In the meantime, everyone else has a role in protecting those who can’t stay at home so I would urge people to distance themselves from all non-essential contact with others and, of course, wash hands regularly.
“If you need help or assistance there are several public service helplines in operation, but people should always feel free to contact myself and other Sinn Féin representatives who will remain on hand to provide any practical assistance required”.