PAI LEINSTER HOUSE PROTEST, Thursday 29th March 2018

Our protest outside the gates of Leinster House 1pm-2pm last Thursday, 29th March was a success from several points of view.

  1. Political: There was genuine interest from politicians who attended the briefing given by Paula Gilmore, Dee Daly and Gary Boyle in Leinster House the day before the protest. On the day TDs and Senators came out and spent time chatting to the protestors. Marian Harkin MEP attended and also addressed the protestors and Minister of State Helen McEntee accepted the petition and letter for Minister Harris
  2. PAI Branches: Groups travelled from our branches in Mayo, Galway, Cork, Tipperary, Wexford, Waterford, Cavan, Louth/Meath and Dublin to attend the protest which gave them a sense of their voices being heard. There was an atmosphere of great camaraderie at the protest
  3. Media Coverage: the protest received national coverage with a report on TV3’s 5.30 News that evening and also a report in the following day’s Irish Examiner. Ten local radio interviews were done, mainly by spokespeople from local branches. A good number of regional newspapers have said they will include coverage in their next editions coming out from today into early next week.      

Politicians who attended protest (and/or sponsored TDs briefing the previous day) included:

Marian Harkin Independent MEP and EU Parkinson’s Ambassador

Helen McEntee TD Minister of State – accepted petition of 11,000 signatures


Bobby Alward FF Carlow Kilkenny

Mary Butler TD FF Waterford

Joan Burton TD Lab Dublin W

Jack Chambers FF Dublin Fingal

Jackie Cahill FF Tipp

Seamus Healy Ind Tipp

Billy Kelleher FF Cork North Central

Alan Kelly TD Lab Tipp

Mattie McGrath Ind Tipp

Michael McGrath FF Cork Sth Central

Caoimhghín O Caoláin SF Cavan Monaghan

Kevin O ‘Keeffe FF Cork North East

Margaret Murphy O’Mahony FF Cork South West

Brendan Ryan Labour Dublin Fingal

Eamon Scanlon FF Sligo-Leitrim

Brendan Smith FF Cavan Monaghan

Niamh Smyth FF Cavan-Monaghan


Kevin Humphreys Labour

Colette Kelleher Taoiseach’s Nominee and former CEO Alzheimer’s Society

Gabrielle McFadden FG

Padraig MacLochlainn SF

David Norris Independent, University of Dublin

Ned O’Sullivan FF

Maura Hopkins FG



Report on TV3’s 5.30 News, Reporter Geraldine Lynagh

Report in Friday March 30th Edition of Irish Examiner, page 5




Northern Sound

Eileen Burke Smith, Cavan Branch

Red FM

Ted Horgan, Cork Branch

Tipp FM

Paula Gilmore CEO

Ocean FM

Ronnie Gillanders, Donegal Branch

LMFM Michael Reade Show

Eamonn Johnston, Louth/Meath Branch


Eamonn Johnston, Louth/Meath Branch

Kildare FM

Gary Boyle, Board Member

WLR Waterford Local Radio

Bernadete Myler Driscoll, Waterford Branch

Spin  Dublin City Radio

Paula Gilmore Ceo Parkinson’s Association

WLR,2nd interview after protest

Bernadete Myler Driscoll, Waterford Branch


Regional newspapers promising coverage of the protest in their next edition include:

Cork Independent

Southern Star

Munster Express

Mayo News

Anglo Celt

Leinster Leader

Meath Chronicle

Dublin Gazette

Radio Coverage


Lack of resources for Parkinson's patients in Cork highlighted outside Leinster House

The Parkinson's Association of Ireland and patients of the disease are appealing to the Health Minister to provide more funding and nurses in the sector. 

People suffering from Parkinson's Disease in Cork are being abandoned by the Health Minister.

That's according to the Parkinson's Association of Ireland who mounting a protest outside Leinster House today.

Currently there are just five Parkinson's Nurse Specialist posts in the country serving 12,000 patients, while patients in Cork have to travel as far as Limerick to see a specialist.

Ted Horgan from Cork has been calling for a specialist in Cork for the past 15 years and the group met with the Health Minister last year but say no improvements have been made for patients.

Speaking to RedFM News, Ted Horgan says per head of population Cork should have at least 3 specialists.

Waterford, Ireland / WLR

Members of the Waterford branch of the Parkinson’s Association of Ireland will take part in a protest at Leinster House later today calling for improved services.

Branches from across the country are staging a demostration to highlight the lack of specialist nurses available nationwide and to call for the Association to be provided with government funding.

A letter and petition will be handed to Minister for Health, Simon Harris.

The demonstration took place at 1pm.

Parkinson’s Association members and their families are appealing to the Minister for Health to commit to:

1. A Nationwide Parkinson’s Nurse Specialist service – Of the current five Parkinson’s Nurse Specialist posts, one is vacant, another part time and one is funded by the Parkinson’s Association. Whole regions of the country have no access to a Nurse Specialist

2. Funding for the Parkinson’s Association

3. Surgery in Ireland and a date for its commencement. At present Parkinson’s patients have to travel abroad for Deep Brain Stimulation surgery.

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurological disorder. There is no cure. It is normally treated with drugs. Deep Brain Stimulation surgery can alleviate symptoms.

News Northern Sound

The Parkinson’s Association of Ireland is protesting in Dublin today, calling for more supports for those with the condition and their families.

They’ll make their case outside Leinster House later today, with people from Cavan and Monaghan also attending.

They want more services and supports, including more specialist Parkinson’s Nurses.

There are currently just four specialist nurses working in Ireland.

But Eileen Burke Smith from the Parkinson’s Cavan Branch says none of those are based in the local region


Kildare Parkinson’s Association members call for government funding and more specialist care nurses.

Association members protest outside Leinster House.

Parkinson’s Association members from all over the country including Kildare protested outside Leinster House yesterday, Thursday March 29.

Chief Executive, Paula Gilmore, handed over a petition with eleven thousand signatures appealing for government funding for the Association’s work to Minister of State, Helen McEntee TD.

The protest was also attended by Marian Harkin, MEP and EU Ambassador for People with Parkinson’s as well as many TDs and Senators from across the political spectrum.








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