Report Reveals Startling Inequality in Irish Broadcasting

By Sarah O’Brien

The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) has unveiled a report showcasing a massive gender imbalance in flagship current affairs programming.

Research undertaken over a three-week period in the latter half of 2014, reveals that 72 percent of those appearing on RTE, Newstalk and Today FM’s main news programmes are male.

The worst offender in terms of female representation was Newstalk at a paltry 18%, with RTE being the best at 37%. Today FM followed closely behind the state broadcaster with 30% female participation.

The ‘Hearing Women’s Voices’ research, carried out by NWCI and DCU, has highlighted a shocking disparity between the numbers of male and female guests.

The report, which was launched today at the Department of Justice and Equality in St. Stephen’s Green, saw Minister Alex White, NWCI Director Orla O’Connor and an expert panel speak at the event. Continue reading

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Bereaved Mother Calls for Accurate and Sensitive Reporting of Murder Suicide Cases

Una Butler Cork

Pictured: Cork woman Una Butler, who lost her two children to a murder-suicide in 2010.

By Sarah O’Brien

Accuracy and sensitivity around the reporting of mental health issues and suicide has been called for by a Cork woman who lost her two children and husband to a murder-suicide.

Una Butler’s husband, John Butler, tragically took his own life and the lives of their young children Ella and Zoe at their home in Ballycotton, Co. Cork in 2010.

Speaking at symposium on media coverage of mental health stories, organised by the University of Limerick’s Journalism Department, Ms Butler stressed the importance of not shying away from or glamorising and sensationalising murder-suicide stories.

“I can understand that people just cannot comprehend or don’t want to read about it and that is why it is so important that, when murder-suicide cases are being reported on, it should be reported accurately and in a sensitive manner – no sensationalizing, no glamorizing of the events,” Ms Butler explained. Continue reading

Dead Rats, Flies and Blood Stains Among Violations Found in Limerick Restaurants

By Sarah O’Brien

NINE food businesses have been served with closure orders in Limerick since January 2015 due to a litany of hygiene problems, the Limerick Voice has learned.

Records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act reveal the reasons why so many premises were ordered to shut down food operations until they’d cleaned up their act.

Evidence of insects and rodent droppings throughout the food preparation, storage and first floor seating areas were one of the main reasons Star Pizza on Limerick’s Denmark Street was served with a closure order on April 29, 2015.

Health inspectors noted that “a large hole was gnawed through under the pizza oven in the service area” and that “gnawing was evident on the stairs leading to the basement food storage area”. This order was lifted five months later when the premises was cleaned up. Continue reading

Share a Dream Brings the Magic of Disneyland to Limerick

By Sarah O’Brien

Europe’s first all-inclusive indoor play centre for sick and disabled children had a preview opening in Castletroy’s Park Point Complex on Friday.

Dreamland, the brand new play centre set up by the Share a Dream Foundation, will cater for Ireland’s 80,000 disabled children, recreating the magic of Disneyland at home.

Speaking at the opening was Share a Dream Founder, Shay Kinsella: “This is a big news story for Limerick.

“Travelling with sick children can be an ordeal when you consider all the medicine parents have to bring and parking and It’s not easy. Now they can come to Dreamland in Limerick.” Continue reading

Pippa O’Connor’s Book Signing Attracts Crowds in Limerick

By Sarah O’Brien

More than 275 people turned out to meet Pippa O’Connor at her Simple Tips to Live Beautifully book signing in O’Mahony’s Booksellers Limerick recently.

The event, which kicked off at 11am, saw people queuing hours beforehand to meet the lifestyle and fashion blogger.

First in the queue were mother and daughter Martha and Aoife McCarthy. “We came at 9am because we wanted to get here as early as possible to ensure we’d get in to see her,” the pair told the Limerick Voice. Continue reading

Richard Harris Festival Received Just €200 From Council, Organizers Insist

The Richard Harris International Film Festival has refuted claims made by Limerick City and County Council that the festival has received €1100 in funding this year.

Festival organisers insist that the international event only received €200 from the Council of Arts Office in 2016 –  €100 less than last year.

This sum, which has been allotted to them under the Grants under the Arts Scheme, is classed as funding relating directly to financing cultural activities in the city.

Organisers say that they have also received a letter of offer from the Fáilte Ireland and IPB Insurance Community and Diaspora Fund to the value of €900, but state that this money is a tourist initiative and is entirely dependent on the number of overseas visitors achieved. Continue reading

Actor Turned Restaurateur to Open Vegan-Friendly Establishment in Limerick

By Sarah O’Brien

LIMERICK actor Kevin Kiely Jnr. is set to open a new vegan and vegetarian restaurant in his home town this December.

The Old Fire Station Restaurant, located at 35 Thomas Street, is to become an alternative “chill-out space” to Limerick’s pub and nightclub scene.

The restaurant, named after the old fire station, is currently undergoing renovations and its owners estimate it will seat close to 50 people.

Speaking about the opening, the actor told the Limerick Voice: “Everyone will be welcome at the restaurant, we’ll be offering a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere where people can come to chat, have a coffee and play a bit of piano if they wish.” Continue reading