Name: Emer Higgins
Preferred pronouns: She/Her
Political Party: Fine Gael
Constituency: Dublin Mid West
Candidate’s stance on the issues that matter most to young people:
I believe we need to take action on climate change. South Dublin County Council is leading the way. We are doing really innovative work locally. We’ve secured a €4.5m grant for a pilot initiative with a local data centre to take the heat waste from the centre and use it to generate electricity to power public buildings like the Civic Theatre and Tallaght Library. When we see the results of this pilot I would then hope to champion rolling it out nationwide.
There are too many challenges facing people when it comes to housing at the moment – and getting houses built is the only way out of the current situation.2020 will see the highest number of social homes added to the stock in a single year this century. Over 11,000 homes will be delivered, and if we are re-elected we will deliver 60,000 social houses over the next five years. Fine Gael is the only party with a thorough, costed plan to rebuild Ireland. 100,000 is the number of houses that should have been built during the recession but neither Government nor private developers had the money to build them. We’re still playing catch-up but we’re making progress. Fine Gael is the only party with a thorough, costed plan to rebuild Ireland.
Mental Health Services
Our health service is not fit for purpose. This includes our mental health services and the crisis in CAMHS. Successive Governments have been unable to make significant progress in changing that. The publication of Sláintecare, however, marks a cultural shift. As every main party has signed up to the Sláintecare programme we’ve now managed to take the politics out of our health service. This means that no matter who is Minister for Health an agreed plan is place that will deliver progress in the health service. Sláinte Care is the way forward.
Education Funding, including Third-level Fees
I’m a member of the Governing Authority of UCD where I went to college myself. It’s really important that we continue to encourage young people into college and that means making it affordable and attainable – that’s what I advocate for on the board of UCD.
Funding for Youth Work
Dublin Mid West has a huge population of young people, some of our villages are the fastest growing in Ireland. It is vital that we build communities and I have seen first hand the benefit of youth work, from early school leaver programmes to youth clubs for younger children. We need to keep our young people engaged and active in our communities.
I believe direct provision centres are necessary to ensure we have a safe place to house people who come to Ireland in search of refuge. Direct provision centres should be a temporary fix for refugees, the main change I would like to see is the administrative process sped-up.
Learn more about Emer
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- Read more about Emer Higgins on their Website
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