Manorhamilton Area Sinn Fein councillor, Sean McSharry, has described Minister Noonan’s recent comments that emigration is a lifestyle choice as insulting and out of touch with reality.
Cllr McSharry pointed out that while the government got a gold star from the Troika for continuing to punish the most vulnerable in society, low to middle income workers, disadvantaged schools and our elderly in nursing Homes.
“The Minister comes out with a very insensitive statement describing emigration as a lifestyle choice. I will ask the Minister was he ever threatened with eviction by the banks, did he ever have to worry where the next mortgage payment was going to come from, or how a small hike in fuel can leave families struggling,” said Cllr McSharry.
“I would ask Mr Noonan to come down from the ivory tower and visit any departure lounge of Ireland’s major airports where he can witness the tears of Grandparents, parents, brothers and sisters waving there loved ones away not knowing when or if ever they will return.
“Several people have contacted me on this issue I have friends and relations away from home they noted how Minister Noonan had no money for job creation or indeed retention and he should look at his own governments lifestyle choices and the impact they are having on Ireland. A local man contacted me saying that the majority of people away from home are still contributing to the Irish economy by sending money home every month.
“In my own area of north Leitrim emigration has dealt a huge blow to the local economy and its not a lifestyle choice by any means. If the Minister wants make amends the best way he could is to grant Irish citizens abroad the right to vote in all elections at home.”