MEP Prendergast invites Troika to tour disadvantaged areas in Cork City

Labour MEP for Munster, Phil Prendergast, today issued invitations to officials of the European Central Bank (ECB), Vice-President of the European Commission Olli Rehn and Karina Manasseh, the Global Legislative Liaison of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to tour disadvantaged areas in Cork City to see the devastating impact of the EU-IMF programme on areas of the city. In her letter, Ms. Prendergast said “Further to the recent publication of the International Monetary Fund’s working paper on Growth Forecast Errors and Fiscal Multipliers, I would like to request a meeting with IMF officials responsible for the EU-IMF Financial Assistance Programmes in the European periphery, with a view to discuss the Assistance Programme’s activities and impact, particularly in Ireland, and to invite them to visit economically depressed areas of my constituency of Ireland South.” Explaining her reasoning for the invitation Ms Prendergast stated “When the bailout officials visit Ireland for their frequent reviews they are sheltered in the cosy surrounds of Merrion Square, and may not be fully aware of the impact of their policies. I want these officials to see for themselves the hardship that their decisions inflict on families and communities, not just in Cork, but all over the country. “The European Parliament is the only democratically elected body to whom the ECB officially owes a modicum of accountability, so as an MEP for Cork City and as someone who has seen how the city is suffering, I want them to witness the impact of their policies first hand. “If you look at areas like Knocknaheeny, Hollyhill, Gurraunabraher, Shandon Street, Fairhill, Farranree, Blackpool, The Glen, Mayfield, Lotamore, Ballyphehane and Togher- all of which have being labelled very disadvantaged by a recent All-Island Deprivation Index compiled by Trutz Haase- it will be plain for the Troika to see that its current policies are not working for people on the ground. “It will also be apparent that the current Programme needs to be revisited with the aim of providing some relief to ordinary families and communities, many of whom have family members who are unemployed or who have been forced to emigrate. “When I meet with the individual bodies mentioned above, I intend to tell the human side of the current policy direction which I believe is misguided and destructive in the extreme.”

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