Storm Ophelia – Niall Speaks to The Support Services and The Public For a Fully Interactive Report

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/ophelia-storm-hurricane-boylan-4fm-esb-transport-podcast/

Ex-Hurricane Ophelia finally made land in Ireland today and Ireland braced itself for the strongest storm to hit the country.

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A country wide Red Alert was issued by Met Eireann and the Government as all citizens were asked to remain indoors where possible.

 

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Niall spoke to many of the Emergency Services for updates on the destruction of the storm. Members of the public called in from across the country to share their stories of dealing with Storm Ophelia.

 

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Unity Network told Niall how Cork was one of the first places to feel the full force of Ophelia.

 

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The full impact of the weather was seen when Turner’s Cross stadium suffered serious damage.

 

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Callers sent us in their videos that they were shooting as we were live on air.

 

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The tragic news came during the show of the death of a woman in Waterford. Niall spoke to Pat Keith of the Dungarvan Observer of the situation in Waterford.
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The updates from our callers ensured that we had news as it happened across the country.
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Our Facebook Live Feed was pretty busy throughout the show with your stories coming in think and fast.
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Remember that schools will be closed tomorrow as the damage is assessed across the country.
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Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Should a woman take the man’s name when getting married?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/woman-wife-husband-maiden-name-4fm-boylan-podcast/

Should a woman take the man’s name when getting married?

I want to ask you that today because of an email that came into the show.

A man called John wrote the following

“Hi Niall, love the show. Can you and your listener’s help with something that is brewing between me and my fiancée.

I’m marrying my school sweetheart. We’ve been together almost 10 years. She’s the best thing that’s ever happened in my life and I know we’ll be happy together.

She’s become successful in her marketing job and I know when the time comes she will be a fantastic mother.  There’s just one problem that is causing a problem between my family and my fiancée – She’s refusing to take my surname when we get married.

She says that it’s 2017 and women are not taking their partner’s names anymore. She has said before jokingly that being forced to take your partner’s name is almost like saying that she is my property.

My parents on the other hand are furious! My Dad said that we need to insure our family name is never lost. I’m their only son so my father says it’s my responsibility to ensure that family tree continues. He is adamant of this and says that if my fiancée really loved me then this would not be an issue for her.

My mates are slagging me off saying that my fiancée wears the pants in our relationship, and while I laugh along with them it’s beginning to make me feel that I should stand up and say something to her.

Am I being unreasonable in asking my future wife to take my name when we get married? I’d love to hear what your listeners have to say?”

What do you think of this email? Is this man wrong to want his fiancé to take his name? Or is that a little draconian?

Some in the office said “Why bother getting married if you don’t want to take your partner’s name? Just to do a civil partnership.

The tradition of taking your husband’s name is centuries old – so is it time that we questioned this practice? OR has the feminist movement gone so far that they want to remove all traces of the man in a marriage?

So today I want to ask you – Is it insulting for a woman to refuse to take her husband’s name in marriage?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

 

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Would you judge a person if they held a full on funeral for their pet?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/boylan-4fm-podcast-funeral-pet/

Would you judge a person if they held a full on funeral for their pet?

The reason I want to ask you that is because of an email we got into the show. Have a listen to it.

Hi Niall,

Have you ever been invited to the funeral of a pet dog? Well I have and I would love for you to talk about this nonsensical thing on your show please.

My friend invited me to her dog’s funeral on Saturday just gone. I could not make this stuff up. Her dog passed away and she was obviously devastated. I sympathised with her of course when it happened but when she asked me to go to the funeral I really thought it was taking the biscuit. She also took a full week off work to mourn the death of Roxie.

She invited her family members and her friends and had a full on service for the dog.  It was actually held in a crematorium. Of course I didn’t go because personally I think the whole thing is completely outrageous. In my day, when the dog died we just buried it in the back garden, moved on and got a new dog. These days’ people are treating dogs like human beings and I think it is getting ridiculous.

My friend was pretty annoyed when I told her that I wasn’t going to the funeral but realistically, who would go to a dog funeral.

Can you talk about this on your show please – do people agree with me that pet funerals are ridiculous?

Mark

What do you think of Mark’s email? Do you think he is being unfair? Or do you agree with him and think that a funeral for a dog is absolutely ridiculous?

Would you go to a pet funeral?

It’s a strange one and one I don’t think we have ever spoken about on the show before.

Is a funeral for a pet over the top?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

 

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Do you agree with the Christmas Bonus for Unemployed People being reinstated?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/boylan-4fm-podcast-christmas-bonus-welfare-unemployed/

Are you happy that the Christmas bonus is to be reinstated?

Those on social welfare appear to be the winners in Budget 2018.

Minister Paschal Donohoe today announced a €5 per week increase in all weekly social welfare payments, beginning end March 2018.

Among those set to benefit from this are the unemployed, disabled, pensioners and lone parents.

It was also announced that the Christmas bonus payment of 85% will again be paid to all social welfare recipients in 2017.

Tonight I want to know if you are happy to see it reinstated.

It is not going to be fully reinstated but 85% is practically there.

The bonus used to be a once off end-of-year payment for elderly people, carers and long-term social welfare recipients. It was equal to 100 per cent of the person’s social welfare payment.

It was scrapped when the recession hit but each budget since the recovery started has seen the bonus reinstated by more each year. It was 25% first, then 50%, 75% and now 85%. I think it would be a fair estimation that it won’t be long until the bonus is reinstated fully.

The government are feeling quite generous but it seems more so to those on welfare.  Last year the bonus cost the state around €225 million in payouts.

1.3 million people on welfare in this country will benefit from the bonus. Maybe you think Christmas is an expensive time and those on welfare need a help in hand – I want to hear from you.

Or maybe – like me – you work your backside off and don’t see a penny of a Christmas bonus and it annoys you that those on welfare are getting one for staying at home and not working.

Is the Government really giving them an incentive to get out and work? Or are they making the same mistakes again and making it easier for people to stay on welfare for a longer time.

I am obviously not talking about pensioners or carers because I think everyone agrees with a bonus for them – but a person on the welfare long term (which is 12 months or more) – should they really be given a bonus?

I want to know what you think, so –

Are you happy or angry that the 85% Christmas bonus will be reinstated?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Are you better off following the release of the details of Budget 2018?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/boylan-4fm-podcast-budget-welfare-varadkar-government/

Yesterday was D day – and by that we mean Budget day – the day when men and women in suits in a little room decide what the countries money will be spent on.

Today Niall wanted to get your reaction to the budget. It certainly seems like people on social welfare were the big winners this year. I want to know what you think of the budget – are you happy with it or are you disgusted and feel hard done by.

Here is a summary of it –

  • A total of €1.83 billion has been allocated to housingin Budget 2018, with 3,800 social houses to be built by local authorities and approved housing bodies.
  • The Housing Assistance Payment Scheme will increase by €149m, enabling an additional 17,000 households to be supported and accommodated next year.
  • Funding for homeless services will increase by €18m to more than €116m.
  • The Government has said 4,000 social housing homes will be delivered next year through the Social Housing Current Expenditure Programme.
  • An extra €500m for the direct building programme will see 3,000 additional new build social houses by 2021.
  • €750m is to be made available for commercial investment in housing finance.
  • The level of stamp duty on commercial property transactionswill rise from 2% to 6% from midnight.
  • The vacant site levywill increase from 3% in the first year to 7% in second and subsequent years.
  • new house-building entityto boost construction has been announced.
  • An additional 1,300 teaching posts have been announced for next year, of which 300 are being used to reduce the primary pupil teacher ratioto 26:1.
  • €1.7 billion will be invested in special education, with more than 1,000 new Special Needs Assistants being recruited before September 2018.
  • An additional 800 gardaí will be recruited during 2018. Another 500 civiliansto be hired also.
  • The health allocation includes an additional 1,800 staff in frontline services across acute, mental health, disability, primary and community care sectors.
  • A reduction in prescription charges for all medical card holders under 70from €2.50 to €2 per item.
  • The monthly cap drops from €25 to €20, with the threshold for the Drugs Payment Scheme dropping from €144 to €134.
  • An increase of €685m in allocation to the Department of Health brings total funding to almost €15.3bn next year.

Social welfare

  • From the last week of March, there will be a €5 per week increase in all weekly social welfare payments, including disability allowance, carer’s allowance, Jobseekers’ Allowance and the State pension.
  • A Christmas bonus payment of 85% will be paid to all social welfare recipients in 2017.
  • There will be a €20 increase in the earnings threshold for the One Parent Family Payment and Jobseekers’ Transitional scheme.
  • The threshold for the Family Income Supplement will rise by €10 per week for families with three children. €2 per week rise in the rate of the qualified child payment.
  • There will be a €2.50 increase in the Telephone Support Allowance for those receiving the Living Alone and Fuel allowances.
  • The home carer credit will rise by €1000 to €1,200.
  • The point at which an income earner attracts the higher rate of income taxwill rise next year by €750 per annum.
  • The entry point for single earners will increase from €33,800 to €34,550.
  • Targeted changes to Universal Social Chargewill reduce rates but do not narrow the USC tax base.
  • The entry point to USC will remain at €13,000.
  • The 2.5% USC rate will be reduced to 2% with the ceiling for the new rate increased from €18,772 to €19,372.
  • The 5% USC rate will be reduced to 4.75%.
  • A working group will be set up over the coming year to plan the amalgamation of the USC and PRSI over the medium term.
  • The Earned Income Credit for the self-employed will rise by €200 to €1,150 a year.
  • Reduction in seven-year period for owners to enjoy full relief from Capital Gains Tax to four years.
  • Mortgage interest reliefwill be cut next year in a move that will affect about 300,000 homeowners.
  • The relief for people with loans from 2004-2012 is being continued to 2020, but at just 75% of the rate in 2018, 50% in 2019 and 25% in 2020.

Sugar tax – we will be talking about this in more detail later on in the show.

  • From April 2018, there will be a 30 cent per litre of tax on drinks with over 8g of sugar per 100ml.
  • There will be a reduced rate of 20 cent per litre on drinks with between 5g and 8g of sugar per 100ml.
  • The excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes will rise by 50 cents.
  • The VAT rate on sunbed services is to increase from 13.5% to 23%.
  • There will be €17 million for the Renewal Heat Incentive and to incentivise an increase in electric vehicles.

Rainy Day Fund will be established in the coming year, with at least €1.5 billion transferred to it from the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund.

Are you better off following the release of the details of Budget 2018?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Interview with an Irish man caught in the Las Vegas Shootings?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/interview-irish-man-caught-las-vegas-shootings/

America was stunned at the horrific shootings of concert goers in Las Vegas. Niall spoke to Irish man Patrick Mahony who was performing at The House of Blues in the city as the attach took place.

He described the chaos as the shooter was firing on the public and the aftermath of the attack.

Naill went on to ask if you would support the right to carry guns in Ireland?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Do you think Hugh Hefner exploited women?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/boylan-4fm-podcast-hefner-playboy-sexist-pornography/

Do you think Hugh Hefner exploited women?

As you all know, the playboy mogul passed away last week at the ripe age of 91. His death was met with positive media coverage, painting him as both a driving force in the sexual revolution and a gentle soul with a soft spot for oppressed groups of people.

But not everyone felt that way with many people coming out and saying that he was a misogynist who exploited women and damaged women’s right.

GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance against Defamation) president and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis slammed the media’s kind tributes, calling Hefner a misogynist whose exploitative empire caused “irreparable damage to women’s rights.”

She took to twitter and said “It’s alarming how media is attempting to paint Hugh Hefner as a pioneer or social justice activist. Because nothing could be further from reality”

She went on to say “Hefner was not a visionary. He was a misogynist. He built an empire sexualizing women & mainstreaming stereotypes that caused irreparable damage to women’s rights & our entire culture.”

She is not alone in her views either. There are many people who think the same.

Not everyone who worked for the Playboy magnate claims they had such a good time in the iconic mansion.

A number of Playmates have spoken out about their lives in the world’s most famous bachelor pad, suggesting that it wasn’t all smiles behind the scenes.

Playboy Bunny Holly Madison offered a bleak description of her time living with Hugh.

In her book she wrote that everyone thinks that the infamous metal gate was meant to keep people out. But she grew to feel it was meant to lock her in.

Holly Madison uses her book to offer another bleak perspective saying she turned to drugs and alcohol to cope with her life as a playmate.

Fellow Playmate Izabella St. James also claimed in her book that the experience wasn’t as pleasant as outsiders may be lead to believe and explained how they used to have to ask for their allowance every Friday.

She said “We all hated this process. Hef would always use the occasion to bring up anything he wasn’t happy about in the relationship.

She added that most of the complaints were about the lack of harmony among the girlfriends or  lack of sexual participation in the ‘parties’ he held in his bedroom.

She alleged that he used their allowance as a weapon and wouldn’t give it to them if they were not available for the bedroom parties.

Playboy model Carla Howe  previously said that the girls have a strict 9pm curfew, saying that none of them are even allowed to invite friends to the mansion to see them.

Now all of that does not sound like a man who respects women but many Playmates will actually say they lived a great life in the mansion and that Hefner was extremely respectful and looked after them.

Some people will even say that these women chose this lifestyle so why have a go at Hugh Hefner for it after he passed away?

We spoke to Dr Gail Dines who gave us an insight into Hugh Herner that she believed that was created by his media Machine. You do not want to miss what she had to say.

I want to know what you genuinely think of the Playboy mansion, the Playboy and the bunnies –

So – do you think Hugh Hefner exploited women?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Do you support the introduction of a Sugar Tax?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/boylan-4fm-podcast-sugar-tax-obesity/

Do you support the introduction of a sugar tax?

It is back in the news today after sources said that it is almost certainly going to be included in the budget.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar recently revealed that he wanted to see a sugar tax on fizzy drinks and sweets.

Speaking about the issue at the recent Fine Gael think in he said he has been a long time supporter of the sugar tax and he wants to see it introduced but he is not in a position to go into details.

Studies have shown that one in four Irish children are overweight while the country has the worst obesity rates in Europe.

Today I want to know if you would be happy to see a sugar tax in the budget.

The rate of tax has not yet been decided and could range from 1c to 20c per 330 ml can. The annual yield would be approximately €8.4 million for a 1 cent increase, and would be around €168.7 million for a 20 cent increase.

Today I want to know if you think a sugar tax is necessary.

If the companies are forced to pay more tax, the price will go up for consumers.

Do you agree with that if it means the rate of childhood obesity may go down?

They have raised the price of cigarettes over the years, it’s now €11 for 20 smokes, but it hasn’t stopped most people from smoking. The budget could see cigarettes increased to €11.50 in this year’s budget also.

Should the rest of us suffer because someone can’t control their weight or the weight of their children?

The obesity figures are pretty scary in this country. But should the parents be targeted instead of sugary drinks?

Or maybe you think that some parents simply don’t have nutritional education and that it’s not their fault.

The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland called for a 20% tax on sugary drinks but as I said the rate of tax hasn’t been decided yet.

I like having a can of coke. I have coke in moderation. Why should I suffer financially because someone drinks it like water?

Maybe you think it’s a step needed to reduce the growing number of Irish children who are obese.

I want to know what you think –

Do you support the introduction of a sugar tax?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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Would you hire an ex convict?

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http://www.theniallboylanshow.com/podcasts/hire-ex-convict/

Would you ever hire a former prisoner?

The reason I want to ask you this today is because of a story I spotted online.

The UK’s leading employer of people with convictions says there can be huge benefits in hiring ex-prisoners.

The Timpson Group owns a wide range of different retail outlets. The companies under the group’s banner include cobblers, locksmiths, photo shops and dry cleaners.

In total, they have about 1,850 outlets spread out across the UK (as well as a small number in Ireland).

The group employs about 4,000 people across all of its outlets. What’s notable about the company is that 10% of these people are ex-convicts.

Just over 15 years ago, James Timpson was invited on a tour of a young offenders open prison in Warrington. He was impressed by his tour guide (a 19-year-old serving three years) and would later go on to hire him.

Following this, Timpson started visiting prisons across the north west of England aiming to recruit people to the business.

Initially, he had some issues admitting that he was recruiting some of the wrong people and that he paid off one guys drug dealer three times.

As he progressed in his recruitment, Timpson began to learn the right and wrong things to do. Today, the company employs over 400 people with convictions.

Timpson was the keynote speaker at a seminar in Dublin this week organised by the Irish Penal Reform Trust (IPRT) around the topic of hiring people with a conviction.

The IPRT campaigns for the rights of prisoners and for progressive reform of Irish penal policy.

The purpose of the seminar was to highlight the recruitment potential of people with previous convictions and to try to combat the stigma against hiring people who have committed crimes in the past.

Today I want to talk about that stigma and ask you if you would hire an ex-prisoner.

Have a listen to some of the comments online about this.

One person said: People make huge mistakes and pay dearly for it. They have time to reflect in prison. Everyone deserves a second chance. They could turn out to be the best employees.

However not everyone was as positive with a few people commenting on how they believes many prisoners do not want an honest life.

Have a listen to this comment: More hug a thug political correctness crap. Most prisoners are unemployable and don’t want a job. Crime is their job. Imagine hiring an armed robber to look after your finances – it’s laughable! How could you trust the person?

So clearly there is still a stigma in Ireland around the issue and many people would not hire an ex-con – would you?

Do all prisoners deserve a second chance at life when they leave prison?

Or do they lose the right to a second chance when they commit crimes?

I want to know what you think –

So – do all prisoners deserve a second chance?

Remember you can find more stories on the Niall Boylan Facebook and Twitter pages and remember #IrelandTalks4fm

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