Traveller families left in limbo after road ban

This article is from page 3 of the 2009-10-27 edition of The Clare People. OCR mistakes are to be expected so download the original SWF or the rendered page 3 JPG

THE whereabouts of three Clare Traveller families ordered to leave the roads of the county last Friday are unknown today, following unsuc- cessful attempts to contact them.

The families, Connie and Mary O’Donoghue and their two sons, John and Tilda Mongans and their three children and Michael and Anne O’Donoghue and their seven children, have been unsuccessful in trying to gain rented accommodation in Clare for the last six months.

During that time, two of the fami- lies have had their homes impound- ed, while they have also been denied access to Clare County Council’s temporary halting site in Ennis.

The difficulty seems to have arisen between Clare County Council and authorities in Northern Ireland over a temporary site, which one of the family’s attempted to get access to in Northern Ireland.

“Connie and Mary O’Donoghue tried to gain access to a temporary site in the north of Ireland to visit re- lations of their’s who were sick. They

were never able to stay in the bay for even one night and their name has been completely withdrawn from that but it is still causing problems for them,’ said Clare Traveller cam- paigner, Heather Rosen, on behalf of WeCom EROODEWTA

“Their home is in Clare, all of their family is from Clare and they have all lived in Clare for the vast major- ity of their life but still they cannot manage to get even a temporary place to stay.

‘In their present situation, the order banning them from the roadsides of

County Clare is effectively banning them from the county altogether. They don’t have anywhere else to Xone Contact has also been made with the Northern Irish Human Rights Commission in an attempt to bring a resolution to the current impasse.

Meanwhile, Clare County Council has spoken out about a number of re- ported incidents of antisocial behav- ior at the local authority’s halting site in Deerpark in Ennistymon.

“In recent weeks, a number of inci- dents have been reported in the vicin-

ity of the Deerpark Group Housing at St John’s estate. These incidents are a matter of concern to the council. These and any other reports will be investigated and followed up by the council, in line with our policies and procedures on estate management,’ said a spokesperson from Housing Social and Cultural Services at Clare County Council.

‘The council has had a number of contacts with the Deerpark Residents Association in recent weeks and the council has affirmed this commit- ment directly to the association.”

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