Sinn Féin Senator Rose Conway-Walsh has highlighted the need for further investment in Rural Transport and supporting projects, such as the local link service in Mayo and across underserved parts of the country.
Speaking after attending an event in Attymass to present the work of Local Link for a Pride of Place Award, Senator Conway-Walsh said:
“Good rural transport is key for our communities here in Mayo and the rest of rural Ireland. Without good reliable transport too, many services and activities are beyond the reach for people.
“The increase in Carbon Tax in the recent budget highlighted the fact that we need to invest in rural transport. On a daily basis I receive calls from people who have difficulty in getting to medical appointments and accessing services and activities.
“This government emphasizes investment in Trains, DART and Luas services, but this focus on urban centres does not help our people in rural Ireland.
“These services are based around large towns and cities, but the government offers limited solutions regarding how anyone in rural Ireland can even get to these services.
“I commend the bus drivers who go above and beyond what they are paid to do so that elderly people in particular get around safely.
“The Westport to Dublin train is overcrowded but it’s a case of we must wait two years before we get new carriages. This is not acceptable.
“Projects such as Local Link are vital in our rural communities and we need to increase funding so that more routes can be developed.
“Forward and joined up thinking is needed from all transport stakeholders to put a good strategic plan in place to improve the transport service in rural Ireland so that people can move more freely and get to where they need to go.”