ndependent TD Mattie McGrath has launched a scathing attack on the Minister for Children James Reilly and the Chief operations Officer of Tulsa the Child and Family Agency for the unilateral decision to immediately withdraw all funding to South Tipperary Lone Parent Initiative (STLPI). Deputy McGrath was speaking after it was confirmed to him through a Parliamentary Question that the entire budget for the project would cease from June 2015:
“Not only is the decision to withdraw all funding absolutely disgraceful, but the manner in which the cut was communicated was also the height of arrogance.
STLPI has been in existence since 1993 and since then has offered professional programmes of support to countless numbers of families.
For all of that work to be summarised in a pathetic two line acknowledgement borders on the vindictive.
The Initiative has in that time built up strong links with Cuan Saor’s women’s refuge in Clonmel and in a capacity that provides a vital link to strengthening the ongoing protection of families.
To have all this work decimated by the withdrawal of a relatively paltry €43,000 seems cruel and unjustifiable.
I have asked the Minister to rescind this cut and to re-engage with STLPI in an effort to save the service for the lone parent families of South Tipperary and have also demanded an urgent Dáil debate on the matter.
The lone parent families of South Tipperary need more than hollow rhetoric of support from this Government; they need firm financial commitment to make that rhetoric a continuing reality,” concluded Deputy McGrath.