News & Media

Labour launch solutions on getting Ireland moving

17 January 2020

Statement by The Labour Party

The Labour Party has today launched a plan on Getting Ireland moving, which aims to cut congestion, promote regional jobs and create liveable communities.

Labour Party Leader, Brendan Howlin TD said:

“The Labour is the party of work. Reforming how people work and making it more family friendly and environmentally friendly is key to our plan.

“On the east coast Dublin is overly dominant. In 2018 three out of every five jobs were created in the Dublin area. Dublin now accounts for almost half of all new graduate jobs.

“This is not sustainable. It impacts on families in commuter towns, robbing them of time and quality of life.

“Between long commutes, extortionate housing and childcare costs and longer working hours, people are no longer working to live but living to work. While we can’t instantly solve these problems, in the short-term Labour has prioritised the promotion of public transport including the fast-tracking of 600 hybrid buses on key commuter routes and new capacity on our rail networks.

“We are determined to build a better Ireland.  Key to that is enhancing the quality of life, especially of young families.  We need investment and join-up thinking.  That is what we are proposing today and its what will make a real difference in the lives of thousands of families.

Labour Party General Election candidate for Louth, Senator Ged Nash added:

“High and unsustainable levels of commuting from major centres like Drogheda and East Meath into Dublin city centre is causing massive congestion on our roads, damaging the environment and impacting on health, relationships and work-life balance. Something needs to change.

“We need to promote Foreign Direct Investment to places like Drogheda, Meath, Fingal, Kildare and Wicklow, prompting IDA backed investment in good jobs to the areas where families live.

“Our large towns are the key drivers of regional economic development. That’s why Labour has committed to re-establishing Borough and town councils so our major urban centres can help shape their own destiny.

“In order to achieve a better work-life balance, we will bring in new laws to access the right to flexible work. Ireland is almost unique in the EU in that this right does not currently exist in Irish law.

“We have always been the Party of work and the party and movement that has understood that we should work to live, not live to work. We believe that now is the time to properly examine the case for a Four Day working week - on the same pay. Significant evidence suggests that where a four day week has been introduced, it has led to better productivity, an improved bottom line, less stress, greater levels of staff engagement and retention. We will establish a Future of Work Commission to make sure that exciting new technologies works for us, rather than us being enslaved by the always on culture.”

Getting Ireland Moving - Policy Document