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Ferris supports call for greater farm safety

29 March, 2004

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Agriculture, Martin Ferris TD, has added his voice to those emphasising the need to improve safety standards on Irish farms. He was speaking at the beginning of Farm Safety Week, which is sponsored by the Health and Safety Authority.

Deputy Ferris said:

"I welcome this initiative, drawing attention as it does to the fact that farming is the most dangerous form of occupation in the State at the present time. Too many people, including children, have lost their lives through farm accidents. Not all accidents can be prevented of course but it is incumbent upon all concerned to insure that the proper safety procedures are in place in farming, as in any other form of employment.

"On a more critical note, however, I would suggest that the striving after higher standards and greater safety in Irish farming is not helped by the current programme of cutbacks in agricultural research and training, as evidenced particularly by the closures and cuts in Teagasc. It is vital that there is a high level of investment and a commitment to training our young farmers, and this in turn will bear fruit with lower accident levels in the future."ENDS

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