Council to investigate gender discrimination
Cllr Colm Markey wants matter looked at after Collon meeting
An investigation into gender discrimination within the Ardee Municipal District council has been called after a heated exchange at last week's meeting in Collon.
Cllr Colm Markey suggested the move, which Director of Services Joe McGuinness said would be passed to the Meetings Administrator. 'They will take time to consider it before deciding if it should be passed on to the Protocol Committee,' he added.
The investigation was called following a debate over odours on the River Dee in Ardee. Cathaoirleach Dolores Minogue and Cllr Jim Tenanty clashed at the end of the discussion, with Cllr Tenanty storming out of the gathering, held in the Mattock Rangers clubhouse.
The matter arose after Cllr Tenanty raised the issue of an odour on the Dee, stating that 'everybody was on our backs' over it.
He had contacted Irish Water and received two emails from them. One said they called out and found 'no odours' and on the second occasion they didn't see any sewage in the river.
'You can see it going into the river,' Cllr Tenanty stated. He said pollution had to be policed.
Cllr Dolores Minogue said she also got a call ftom the public about the odour and 'got abuse over it.'
It was then that the debate became heated between Cllr Tenanty and Minogue, with Cllr Tenanty leaving the room.
Cathaoirleach Minogue asked if the disagreement was 'anti women or anti chair', adding that she had been 'attacked on other occasions'.
Cllr Colm Markey said 'he didn't think allegations could be made' with Cllr Minogue responding, 'I'm not going to be accused of bullying'.
Cllr Pearse McGeough said, 'I respect any chair' and the only issue he has with chairs are when 'they are the subject of pacts.'
'I think if there is gender discrimination, I think there should be an investigation,' Cllr Markey proposed, Pearse McGeough agreeing.
Cllr Minogue added that she didn't want to be called the victim in this. She said she felt 'let down by certain councillors' .