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Question: Are you in favour of scrapping Daylight Savings Time?

Brexit impacted on the answers of some candidates.

In our audit of the Ireland South European election candidates, we asked each candidate to answer questions on nine of the most pressing issues facing Ireland and Europe in the coming years.

Are you in favour of scrapping Daylight Savings Time? If so, would you stick with wintertime or summertime?

Diarmuid O’Flynn

I’m neutral enough on this one but leaning towards sticking with what we have. It kind of defines the two parts of the year, doesn’t affect the spirits that much when it happens in October but is a real lift in March.

Then there’s the valid argument about kids going to school in the dark in the morning. I think I’d stay with what we have.

Mick Wallace

I haven’t heard convincing arguments to the effect that we should change from the current setup.

Peter O’Loughlin

Personally yes but not really a major issue.

Seán Kelly

Yes, I believe it is an outdated practice which has no purposeful use in the modern day and have campaigned as Ireland’s only member of the Parliament’s Clock Change Working Group to end it. I propose we stick with summertime.

Colleen Worthington

Which one would give us more sunshine?

Breda Gardner

Yes, in favour, and stick with Wintertime – I hate the dark mornings!

Sheila Nunan

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I am not in favour of a change that would have Ireland and Northern Ireland in different time zones at any time. As the UK are not changing their system, it doesn’t make sense for Ireland. But I am open to the argument, which is one our Government needs to have with their British counterparts.

Deirdre Clune

Yes and I would prefer that we stick with summertime.

Andrew Doyle

Source: Nick Bradshaw

In early March, the European Parliament voted in favour of removing Daylight Saving Time (DST) permanently.

A recent survey found that 84 percent of European citizens want to stop changing the clock back and forth and have it set at ‘summer’ time permanently. I can see the benefits to this, particularly from a business point of view if European businesses are all operating within the one time zone.

However, this is something that the people must have their say on.

My colleague, the Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan’s department ran a public consultation process on the future of the twice-yearly clock change in October and November of 2018.

I understand that a report on the consultation exercise is being prepared and will be considered by an inter-departmental steering group for submission to Government.

Once the group has reported to government, more details concerning the consultation process and its outcome will be published and I look forward to a fuller debate on this at that stage.

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Liam Minehan

Yes because if there is a benefit for people and mental health it is worth it.

Grace O’Sullivan

I think we need to look at it from a climate perspective. What is the best in the whole trajectory towards decarbonisation? What is the best for Ireland?

Jan Van De Ven

I have no problem with Daylight Savings Time.

Sheila Nunan

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No. Unlike Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil’s groups in Europe, Labour’s group has opposed the creation of an EU army, and Labour in Ireland voted against PESCO, while they voted for it. Our manifesto pledges to defend Ireland’s tradition of military neutrality.

Liadh Ní Riada

This is a proposal that deserves a discussion, however as we are facing the uncertainty of Brexit, we have to face up to the reality the Britain may not be obligated to comply with the scrapping of Daylight Savings. This could leave us in a situation where the North of Ireland could spend six months of the year in a different time zone to the rest of Ireland.

This would add to the existing challenges that civil society and businesses are already facing because of partition.

Therefore, I do not support any proposal that has the potential to see two different time zones in Ireland.

About the author:

Kathleen McNamee

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