With the General Election campaign now coming to a close, Epilepsy Ireland has been busy reaching out to candidates seeking support for our key epilepsy priorities for the next Dáil term.
It is important to note that Epilepsy Ireland are non – political and that we are willing and ready to work with everyone elected to the 33rd Dáil in order to achieve our overarching aim of achieving a society where no person’s life is limited by epilepsy.
However, it is also important to note and acknowledge when political parties and their candidates make a commitment regarding issues that will directly impact on the lives of people with epilepsy and their families. It is also important that our members, service users and supporters around the country are aware of these commitments ahead of polling day.
With that in mind, below is a compilation of the feedback we have received to date on our key asks.
In particular, there have been significant commitments made with regard to the issue of Sodium Valproate.
- In their General Election manifesto (Page 56), Sinn Féin have committed to “Investigating use of Sodium Valproate and create dedicated healthcare pathways for those affected.”
- The Green Party has stated that “The Green Party supports the implementation of the Oireachtas Committee on Health recommendations on Sodium Valproate and foetal anti-convulsant syndrome (FACS).”
- In comments made to the Medical Independent this week, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Health, Deputy Stephen Donnelly said that he is in favour of an independent inquiry on Sodium Valproate. You can read more on his comments as well as Sinn Féin’s manifesto pledge here.
Alongside this, many individual candidates from around the country have responded by email, by phone and on social media committing to help achieve our key epilepsy priorities.
As of Friday morning (7th Feb), these candidates are:
- Andrew Montague; Labour; Dublin North- West
- Brian Leddin; Green; Limerick
- Catherine Martin; Green; Dublin Rathdown
- Charlie McConalogue; Fianna Fáil; Donegal
- Darren O'Rourke; Sinn Fein; Meath East
- Gerald Nash; Labour; Louth
- Jenny Blake; Social Democrats; Limerick City
- Jerry Buttimer; Fine Gael; Cork
- John Paul Phelan; Fine Gael; Carlow - Kilkenny
- Kate O'Connell; Fine Gael; Dublin Bay South
- Oliver Moran; Green; Cork North Central
- Roisin Garvey; Green; Clare
- Sean Haughey; Fianna Fáil; Dublin Bay North
- Sean Sherlock; Labour; Cork East
- Tate Donnelly; Green; Cavan Monaghan
- Vincent Martin; Green; Kildare
- Niall McNelis; Labour; Galway
- Jennifer Caroll MacNeill; Fine Gael; Dun Laoghaire
- Paul McAuliffe; Fianna Fáil; Dublin
- Kenny Tynan; People Before Profit; Galway - Roscommon (Kenny is also a person living with epilepsy)
- Pauline Flanagan; Fianna Fáil; Laois - Offaly
- Mattie McGrath; Independent; Tippearary
- Audrey Fergus; People Before Profit; Meath East
- Theresa O'Donohoe; People Before Profit; Clare (Theresa is also a person with epilepsy)
- Catherine Connolly; Independent; Galway
- Seán Canney; Independent; Galway
- Joe O'Brien; Green; Dublin Fingal
- Jenny Blake; Social Democrats; Limerick
- Bobby Murray; People Before Profit; Cork South Central
- Shane Ross; Independent; Dublin Rathdown
- John Curran; Fianna Fáil; Dublin Mid-West
- Patrick Costello; Green; Dublin South Central
- Emmet Stagg; Labour; Kildare North
- Catherine Ardagh; Fianna Fail; Dublin South Central
- Paul Hayes, Sinn Fein, Cork South West
- Saoirse McHugh, Green Party, Mayo