Fine Gael National Conference Survey

Fine Gael
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On the 19th/20th March Fine Gael will hold a National Conference in the Malton Hotel, in Killarney. As part of the preparations for the conference, a survey was circulated to members. I have posted it below, how would you respond to it?

1. What do you believe should be the theme of the Conference?

2. What are the key issues that the Conference should address?

3. Of the following issue areas, please rank in order of your priority preference, 1, 2, 3, etc.

  • Job Creation
  • Law and Order
  • Economy
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Banking
  • Health

4. Format of conference?

(please answer yes or no)

  • Should we use external speakers to contribute to debate?
  • Should we use workshop format ?
  • Should we use/facilitate more contributions from the floor of the Conference?

5. Are there any other additional comments that you would like to make?

It is an interesting idea, but I wonder will they make use of the suggestions? Im not so sure. I still fired off mine in the hope that they will, and I called for an open interactive conference, with workshops, external speakers and actual debate!

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Survey on Irish Bloggers and Irish Blog Readers

burger survey

Sinead Cochrane is doing some research on Irish Bloggers and Irish Blog Readers (If you are reading this you are at least in the second category!). For the full scoop check out her post about it. If you couldn’t be arsed, fill out the survey!

Picture by lastyearsgirl_ under an Attribution-Noncommercial Creative Commons Licence

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What do you identify as Irish or European?

I was recently talking about this subject to two Masters in Sociology students and it got me thinking what does it mean to be Irish or European.

Please the survey isnt that long please do take it and i will post up the responses.

Click here to take survey

Major National Survey of Public Attitudes to Suicide is Welcome – Neville

Dan Neville TD, Fine Gael Deputy Spokesman on Health and Children today (Wednesday) welcomed the launch of a survey on Irish attitudes to suicide saying:

“The Irish Association of Suicidology’s Survey of Public Attitudes to Suicide in Ireland, North and South, conducted on behalf of the Association by Millward Brown IMS is the first such survey conducted on a national basis and is most revealing. Its findings include:

• 83% of respondents in the Republic and 86% in the North do not think that politicians or Government are doing enough to raise awareness of suicide.
• The vast majority of people do not think enough is being done to prevent suicide in Ireland. Suicide has clearly touched the lives of many people in Ireland in some way, therefore many of the attitudes expressed come from some level of ‘direct’ experience.
• In general Irish people are non-judgemental and sympathetic towards the issue of suicide. This empathy is however coupled with a strong desire to see all possible measures taken to prevent suicide. 25% of respondents in the Republic and 22% in the North would not feel ashamed if a member of their family died by suicide.
• The stigma surrounding suicide appears to have eased somewhat – this tendency is further underlined by the strong support for the decriminalisation of the act. 79% of respondents in the Republic and 64% in the North agreed with the decriminalisation of suicide.
• Issues surrounding the morality of suicide and the right to die are contentious and often highly polarising, although people tend to change their view somewhat when the issue of incurable illness is raised. These are all difficult and emotive moral questions which are always likely to cause divisions in society. In general however, most Irish people wish to see maximum efforts made to prevent the suicide of an individual. In no way does ‘understanding’ of suicide translate into an acceptance or complacent attitude towards the issue for most people. 57% in the Republic and 56% in the North disagreed that once someone has decided to complete suicide that nothing can stop them.
• Overall these findings point to a high degree of latent support for organisations that try to prevent suicide and there is much goodwill and understanding available for these organisations to take advantage of, in their efforts to prevent suicide in Ireland.
• Understanding of the plight of a suicidal person is channelled into a desire to see the suicide prevented and a person helped, while ‘myths’ surrounding suicide are not generally subscribed to.
• A majority agree that suicide is a symptom of a mental illness – although this level of association is notably higher in Northern Ireland than in the Republic. In the Republic the view is less clear cut, with a very significant minority (38%) disagreeing that suicide is related to mental illness. In Northern Ireland men and younger people are somewhat less likely to think that this association is the case.
• Alcohol is seen by many as a major contributor to suicide. Almost 7 in 10 people in the Republic and 6 in 10 in Northern Ireland agree that this is the case. Those in the 25-34 year old age group are particularly inclined to hold this view in the Republic – where overall the association seems to be more widespread.”

Shoppers not benefiting from abolition of Groceries Order but farmers’ return is cut – Naughten

Fine Gael’s Fresh Food Survey 2006 has shown that food prices have increased by 14% in just one year while the price farmers receive for their produce has fallen, according to Fine Gael Agriculture & Food Spokesman Denis Naughten TD.

“Our survey in 2005 showed that shoppers were paying €20.69 for a basket of beef, milk, eggs and a range of vegetables. This year’s survey shows that the cost of the same basket has increased to €22.97. Yet the average price the farmer receives for his produce has fallen.

“The Government and the Competition Authority expected the generosity of big supermarket chains to lower their prices without any legislative changes to ensure that the customer would get the benefit of any discounts and rebates that were procured from suppliers. It is clear that the Government’s strategy has failed, according to our study.

“Our study reveals that the abolition of the Groceries Order has not reduced the price of food, but it has reduced the margin which the farmer receives. In 2005 the farmer received 42% of the supermarket price, now they only receive 38% of the price the public pays for basic food products. The highest margin is on cabbage which retails at an average of €1.39 a head while the farmer gets just 40c, a margin of 247%.

“Even more surprising is the fact that while the Government promised that food prices were supposed to fall in the last 12 months due to the abolition of the Groceries Order, the reality is very different. In the case of mushrooms, the supermarket price has increased by a whopping 31% in the year and there has been a 30% increase in the price of eggs on the supermarket shelf. It is clear from these figures that the Government’s attitude to the consumer has been completely dismissive. We need a balance between protecting consumers from the blatant rip-off of escalating food prices while ensuring that farmers are rewarded fairly for their quality produce.

“Fine Gael’s food proposals include a reform of Ireland’s food labelling system and a streamlined State role in the Agri-food sector in order to better improve marketing and promotion and develop a long-term strategy for the sector. Initiatives like these are key to improving the position of Ireland’s food industry, for consumers, farmers and retailers.

“Fine Gael proposed the changes in competition law that would have allowed, and ensured, that customers would get greater benefit from the changes in the regulations, rather than adopting the Government’s approach of enhancing the profitability of the major supermarket chains.

“Specifically, Fine Gael is calling for:

• a ban on predatory pricing within the retail trade;

• give the National Consumer Agency the teeth it needs, as outlined in Fine Gael’s Consumer Rights Enforcer Policy. This includes empowering the NCA to conduct regular price surveys that highlight good value, and name and shame those charging excessive prices;

• create a price league website with tables on all major products and work with local authorities to drive a pro-consumer agenda at local level involving regular price surveys and measures that protect consumers’ interests against local cartels;

• devise and promote a Good Practice Provider quality mark for suppliers of goods and services that agree to be bound by relevant codes of practice and develop codes of conduct for service providers and retailers on issues like passing on exchange rate movements.

“We have already seen how this Government gave preferential treatment to big business when distributing the sugar compensation package to the detriment of farmers. We now see that big business, rather than the shopper, is the beneficiary of the removal of the Groceries Order. This is just another example of how the Government has allowed the major multinational retailers to increase their turnover while farmers get a reduction in their returns.”

Cork based survey – SGMHP

Southern Gay Men’s Health Project volunteers and staff have just put together a survey to ascertain certain information which would aid us in our duties;

The Survey Aims:
A. To find out how we can improve the Volunteer Outreach Service
B. To find out about sexual health in Cork
C. To find out the level of hate crime in Cork

We would greatly appreciate it if you could take a few minutes to fill out this survey by clicking on the following link;

Thanking you,

SGMHP – Volunteers & Staff

Calling all secondary school students…

Are you a secondary school student this year?
Please help us to investigate homopbic bullying by completing this anonymous, confidential survey

The Anti-Bullying Centre, Trinity College Dublin, in cooperation with BeLonG To are looking for secondary school students to fill in this survey which will contribute to a better understanding of homophobic bullying experienced by youth in Ireland today

Survey here