Grace O’Sullivan, MEP for Ireland South, recently visited Wexford Town to meet constituents for the first time since COVID restrictions were lifted. O’Sullivan visited local schools and met with various community groups including Wexford Tidy Towns and South East on Track.
O’Sullivan, a trained ecologist, delivered a workshop on seaweed to the students of Our Lady of Fatima Special School, who were working towards obtaining a Green Flag for the school on the theme of water. Classes shared their work and projects related to sustainability, and Principal Glenda McKeown and Teacher Natasha Harney spoke about the school’s continued focus on sharing best practices and experiences with other schools in Europe through the Erasmus Plus programme.
Grace then toured the town and viewed the work of the Wexford Tidy Towns Committee. Led by Sue Tobin, the increased focus on biodiversity by the Committee in recent years was commended by O’Sullivan, and Ms. Tobin guided Grace around the sites of the group’s work as well as the heritage of the town.
O’Sullivan then presented her story of activism and political work to the Politics & Society classes of the Presentation Secondary School, Wexford. Grace encouraged the students to follow their passions, volunteer in their community and to build up their skills as she did, working as a lifeguard and with the Tramore Cliff & Sea Rescue as a teenager. These experiences would later equip her to work on boats with Greenpeace, advocating for environmental protection as far away as Antarctica and the South Pacific. The students had plenty of questions for MEP O’Sullivan, with a large uptake in the school in civic education. Grace commended the school and its teachers for facilitating 2 classes per year in this relatively new subject in the curriculum.
Finally, O’Sullivan met with Joe Ryan of campaign group “South East on Track”, who shared his work and proposals for both the potential reopening of the Waterford to Wexford rail line, as well as improved services for the Waterford to Limerick and Waterford to Dublin lines. Grace had visited towns in South Tipperary where increased HGV traffic en route to Rosslare is highlighting the need to use the parallel rail line, and with the appetite for workable sail-rail options to the continent, O’Sullivan pledged to cooperate with her Green Party colleagues MEP Ciarán Cuffe who is a member of the European Parliament’s Committee on Transport & Tourism, as well as Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan.
Grace O’Sullivan is an MEP for Ireland South, sitting with the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament. She is a full member of the European Parliament Committee on Fisheries (PECH) and also the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI).