Monday 26 September 2016

Lucinda Creighton: Government is meaningless if it doesn't strive to create society where all citizens can live in dignity

John Brennan

Published 23/02/2016 | 11:58

Renua leader Lucinda Creighton. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins
Renua leader Lucinda Creighton. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins

A minimum lifestyle standard is just one of the promises Renua Ireland leader Lucinda Creighton outlined at the launch of the its policy on building a decent society.

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Ms Creighton was speaking at Buswells Hotel in Dublin city centre where she said that the core purpose of a government was to improve the quality of life of its people.

 "Government is absolutely meaningless if it does not strive to create a society where all citizens are able to live in dignity and a sense of purpose," she said.

 The party leader also said past governments had missed opportunities to make real improvements to people's lives, in particular highlighting the legacy of the Celtic tiger era which she said could be summed up as just a series of motorways across the country.

 "The fact that that is the sum total of the legacy is a damning indictment of an era when there was enough money to transform the social infrastructure of the nation," she said.

 The party once again pitched itself as a watchdog of sorts saying that if elected they would set clear targets on quality of life indicators like broadband, housing, childcare and nursing home provision and promising transparency in doing so.

 "How as a country we address poverty, child welfare, disability, elderly supports, long term unemployed, homelessness and mental health defines a nations character," she said.

 Ms Creighton was critical of other parties saying that they are simply "setting out vague aspirations".

 "It is not possible to reward work and rebuild trust in our political system unless we have decency in our society," she added.

 Meanwhile, Ms Creighton also expressed her hope that another broadcaster would facilitate a debate among the smaller parties - this comes after RTE informed the party leader that Renua would not be included in tonight's leaders debate.

 "I think the public would be very interested in a debate involving the smaller parties whether it's AAA, Renua Ireland, the Greens or whoever."

 She added that it was now "over to the broadcasters to decide whether they are going to offer a platform to the candidates and parties of choice for close to a million voters."

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