We rounded off the week on Morning Focus with another busy show, touching on a wide range of issues, and a little bit of festive cheer too.
We asked, firstly, if people are more likely to be sexually assaulted during Christmas party season. It comes as Gardaí continue to investigate an alleged attack on a woman who had been attending a Christmas part in Dublin this past weekend. Miriam Duffy from Rape Crisis MidWest said their data showed no increased risk at this time of the year, even though more people are socialising. Anyone in need of their support can contact Rape Crisis MidWest on 1800 311 511.
Next, CEO of the Irish Greyhound Board Ger Dollard explained why they are starting to host race meetings on weekday mornings in Kilkenny and Waterford (from the New Year). The meets will start from shortly after 8:00, and are aimed at international markets. Ger refuted suggestions that this could be fuelling problem gambling, and you can hear the interview below:
Next, Catherine Cox of Family Carers Ireland told us how the government has fared in terms of providing supports for the many, many carers in Ireland, and after 10:00 we turned to the cost of non-alocholic beer. Listeners reported paying up to €5.50 in pubs for non-alcoholic beer, and many contacted the show to complain about the costs when compared with alcoholic beer. Gavin spoke with retired Kilkee businessman Manuel di Lucia and Chair of the Clare VFI, Darragh McAllister.
Next, Melissa McMahon reported on shopping local, having spoken with shoppers and traders in Ennis, and then Siobhan Mulcahy told us of all that is happening in the Arts in the week to come. We also discussed the annual Christmas Féile for Mol an Óige Steiner School – that’s taking place on Sunday from 12-4 – and Jenny Shaw told us about The Festival of Christmas Trees in St. Columba’s Church on Bindon Street in Ennis. Different groups from around the town have come together to design and decorate a Christmas tree, and that event starts on December 14th, and continues this Saturday and Sunday, as well as on December 21st-23rd.
Our Friday Panel of Dermot Hayes, Michael McNamara and Tony Killeen reviewed a very busy political week, with Brexit and the Confidence and Supply Agreement topping the agenda:
And we finished off the show with some live music in studio by siblings Sean and Aisling Lyons, who are taking part in the Chapel Lane tunes for MidWest Simon event over the next two weekends (December 15th-16th and December 22nd-23rd).