Friday, November 18, 2011

Call in Ireland's parliament for Irish Red Cross Vice Chairman and Treasurer to step down

Not for the first time in recent months there has been another call in Ireland’s parliament, Dail Eireann, for the Irish Red Cross national Vice Chairman, Anthony (Tony) Lawlor, to step down from his post after serving a staggering 21 years in the position. In addition to calls for Mr. Lawlor to step down an additional call was made for the Irish Red Cross Treasurer, Mr. Ted Noonan, to also consider stepping down. Mr. Noonan has been a member of the Executive Committee for ten years and the Treasurer for the past three years. He has been at the helm as Treasurer throughout recent controversies at the Society.

In suggesting both Mr. Lawlor and Mr. Noonan step down, Deputy Finian McGrath stated on the 9th November 2011

To ask the Minister for Defence his views that the time is now appropriate for the Vice Chairman and Treasurer of the Irish Red Cross to step down from their positions in order to allow for a more reasonable turnover of personnel at leadership positions within the Irish Red Cross”.

In addition Deputy McGrath stated:

To ask the Minister for Defence if following his letter to the Chairman of the Irish Red Cross of 16th July 2011 (should have read 16th May) regarding corporate governance issues the Society has now considered a more comprehensive reform of its corporate governance arrangements; his views on the fact that the current vice chairman of the IRC is still serving in that position for the 21st year in a row, that the current Treasurer in that position for ten years in a row and both on the Executive Committee for 21 and 10 years respectively; his further views on whether this arrangement is in line with best practice corporate governance guidelines; and if he will make a statement on the matter

On the issue of governance and the misgovernance at the Irish Red Cross Deputy McGrath had a third question for the Minister:

To ask the Minister for Defence if consideration has been given to incorporating term-limits and retrospection of service for members of the Irish Red Cross executive committee in the amendments to the Irish Red Cross Order 1939; when he expects to bring forward the draft legislation on the Red Cross to Cabinet for approval; and if he will make a statement on the matter”

Deputy Finian McGrath is a senior, well respected and influential politician in Ireland’s parliament. His interventions in the Irish Red Cross crisis are both important and welcome. In calling for the resignation of the Society’s Vice Chairman and its Treasurer Deputy McGrath is targeting the heart of the deep rooted problems and dysfunction that exists. Internally within the Irish Red Cross there is a great fear and reluctance to tackle the core issues that have brought humiliation, shame and disgrace on the Society. Such fear and reluctance is often typical of dysfunctional governance structures where group think and a herd mentality become accepted practice. When this becomes ingrained, as it has within the Irish Red Cross, only decisive external intervention will resolve the problems.

Minister Alan Shatter has taken a much more robust approach to the Irish Red Cross than any of his predecessors who remained completely indifferent during their tenures in office, the consequences of which we are paying for today. Minister’s Shatter’s letter of 16th May 2011 to the Irish Red Cross Chairman, which was subsequently kept from Central Council members until revealed on this Blog, made it very clear he wished to see long serving board members depart the board of the Irish Red Cross. The Irish Red Cross rejected the Minister’s suggestion and reappointed the Vice Chairman and Treasurer. It remains to be seen if the Minister penalises the Irish Red Cross for its insistence in persisting with appalling governance practices by reducing the annual government grant to the Society in 2012.

In typical Irish Red Cross fashion the date and agenda of the upcoming Central Council meeting are being kept a closely guarded secret. Such secrecy is reflective of the fear and paranoia of the Society’s leadership. With an extremely weak and complient Central Council the ruling elite and the controlling cabal continually get away with treating fellow board members in this dismissive manner.

It can only be hoped that at the November/December Central Council meeting that Central Council members will find their independence and courage and finally demand the resignations and removal of the Vice Chairman and the Treasurer. It is humiliating and embarrassing for the Society that such courage is left to those external to the Society. Until such time as the Vice Chairman is held to account for his actions and the Treasurer for his inactions and both removed from all Irish Red Cross governance structures the Society will suffer indefinitely.

No amount of tinkering at the edges of reform and producing endless written policies will compensate for the damage done by not holding people responsible for wrongdoing and negligence to account.

The link to the Parliamentary Questions of the 9th November 2011 and the Minister’s replies is:

http://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2011-11-09.904.0

The parliamentary question put down on the awarding of an Irish Red Cross IT/Web Design contract to a UK company was not answered and appears to have been withdrawn.

All persons ought to endeavour to follow what is right, and not what is established-Aristotle

27 comments:

  1. Anonymous6:50 AM

    I saw an article in which Sinn Fein has complimented the Irish Red Cross on its flood response in Dublin. Is this payback for the £100,000 (Irish punts) the Irish Red Cross channeled to the IRA in the early 1970s to help them get established???!!

    At €30,000 the Irish Red Cross floods response is very small but no doubt welcome to the people who received assistance. Hopefully the Government's €10 million flood fund will be released soon.

    Irish Red Cross raised over €1 million in 2009 for the floods back then. How the mighty have fallen but now that the truth is out the reality of the Irish Red Cross is known to the wider public and they are voting with their pockets.

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  2. Anonymous5:29 AM

    Worth looking at the values of other National Societies within the Red Cross / Crescent Movement:
    The American Red Cross has not been without its critics over the 9/11 spending for example but they have taken steps to put their house in order.
    Take a look at the website they have set up to provide means of accountability. They state the following in their introduction:-
    The ongoing success of American Red Cross depends on our employees and volunteers conducting business with integrity and in full compliance with regulations, legislation, and our own corporate operating policies and procedures. Ethical and compliant business behavior that reflects our corporate values is right for our employees and volunteers, right for our customers, right for our stakeholders, and right for our business. American Red Cross depends on you to safeguard our organization's reputation and protect us from financial and legal harm.
    American Red Cross has provided this website to enable you to report your concern in a confidential and anonymous manner. This reporting program may be used for the report of a variety of ethics, integrity, and compliance issues. In submitting a report, you may remain anonymous or identify yourself and provide information as to how American Red Cross can contact you directly if additional details are desired. In either case, your information will be treated confidentially.
    See link https://www.integrity-helpline.com/RedCross.jsp

    It is time for IRC to wake up to the fact that they need to get connected to their potential and actual support base. Need not ask what are they afraid of but there must be some good apples in the barrell who could provide a lead.

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  3. Anonymous11:34 PM

    The Irish Red Cross have a somewhat disimilar facility on their web site. 1. You are not allowed to see any details of who Branch Secretaries are, this is in case you might contact them and god forbid inform them about what really goes on within the Society. 2. They welcome your comments which will either not be replied to or will be replied to with " Your comments are noted". 3. The reality is they couldn't care less what you think ! Ask Minister Shatter they ignored his letter of the 16th May 2011 and failed to bring it to the attention of Central Council members. 4. They have a Central Council which no one is allowed to know who is on it! Even if you write directly to this outfit they will never see your letters! The controlling elite ensure this, as does the new Secretary Gen. I could go on, but I am sure you are getting the picture. Basically the Irish Red Cross is the perfect example of a dysfunctional and badly governed organisation.



    Does anyone know when the Central Council meeting is? Why has the date not been set, why have members not been informed and where is the agenda? The meeting is supposed to take place in November. Why oh why do Central Council members accept this kind of treatment???

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  4. Anonymous12:25 AM

    The mighty and ill informed will meet in Dublin on the 10th of December to celebrate a quick cup of tea. They shall genuflect before their masters and then be sent off with the knowledge that they have served the Society well. There may be a risk that one of them will pose a question, but given the fact that they know nothing of what is going on as the Executive Committee treat them like mushrooms the answers will be short and no committal. What a huge waste of energy and time. What is the point of this meeting, the Central Council do nothing. What did they do with the correspondence from the Minister of State Alan Shatter. Oh yes, they didn’t see it, as the Executive decide what they get to see. It’s yet another sham!

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  5. Anonymous1:19 AM

    Dear Blogger,

    The Central Council meeting is scheduled for Saturday 10th December 2011.

    If the Irish Red Cross was even remotely functional then Saturday 10th December 2011 would be the last day the current Vice Chairman and Treasurer would serve in office on any Irish Red Cross board. They would be forced to resign if not done so willingly. This sadly will not happen as the Central Council members have themselves become complicit through their silence and inaction. They have not changed, the same CC members still serve so we can expect the status quo to prevail post 10th December.

    At least we have the lowest of the low expectations going into another Central Council meeting so its good we wont be disappointed.

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  6. Anonymous2:12 AM

    The Blog can reveal that the Department of Defence has been forced to admit that the Irish Red Cross has at least 18 undeclared properties around Ireland. The Department had to admit this in formal correspondence to the Dail's Public Accounts Committee (PAC). The PAC continues to investigate the Irish Red Cross and will re-commence its investigation in the New Year.

    These properties were supposed to be declared as income and recorded on the Irish Red Cross balance sheet as assets. For years, despite warnings from their auditors, Irish Red Cross knowingly failed to do this. Serious questions remain unanswered and this Blog has written a number of articles on the scandal of Irish Red Cross properties and the breaches of standard accounting procedures.

    Even worse the Department has been forced to admit that because of utter negligence and incompetence the Irish Red Cross is having difficulty 're-constructing' documents of title on 10 of these properties and that to do so will take at least another 6-12 months to complete.

    It is an incredulous indictment on the Irish Red Cross that not only have they failed to record the value of multi million euro donations they have also lost the titles and deeds of these properties. It says alot about the staggering dysfunction at the Irish Red Cross that no heads have rolled over this absolute shocking betrayal of the public's trust. Still the Irish Red Cross accepts properties from the general public by way of wills and legacies. It is simply disgusting.

    It can only be hoped that Central Council members at the 10th December 2011 meeting demand a full list of the whereabouts of these properties, the state they are in and a full description of the buildings and land as well as the plans for their future use and benefit to the Society.

    It must also be establsihed that no board member of the Irish red Cross has used or utilised or personally benefited or assisted others to personally benefit these properties in any way over the last 20 years and if there is any question around this the Gardai need to be called in to investigate immediately.

    The Blog

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  7. Anonymous12:36 AM

    Whilst you are on the topic of properties. The Executive Committee, not the central Council sold 50 Merrion Road (Naoimh Aindreas). This property was the refugee home, a vital part of Irish Red Cross work, used to provide assistance for those in need. Mr Lawlor and Co. in their wisdom thought; why not sell this property at the height of the refugee influx into Ireland. This was objected to, but the objections were ignored. They said at the time and it is recorded in documentation. “That 50 Merrion road is being sold and the money is to be used to purchase a more suitable property”. I have a few very simple questions. 1. Where did the money go? 2. Who gave the Executive the right to sell an asset of the Society without Central Council approval? 3. Where is the new refugee home?

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  8. Anonymous9:23 AM

    At least 18 properties undeclared and purposely kept off the books of Irish Red Cross for years. Its a scandal. These properties were given by people who had passed away and trusted the Irish Red Cross to use the properties appropriately and in the pursuance of charitable activities. The Irish Red Cross has failed in its duty.

    It took a hearing of the Dail's Public Accounts Committee to finally get a number on the properties as the Irish Red Cross kept this information secret from most of its board members and Central Council members. The fact that board members accepted this secrecy despite knowing about the undeclared property portfolio speaks volumes for their capacity to serve on any board but thats another story entirely. The Public Accounts Committee forced the Department of Defence to reveal the truth.

    And the above comment reveals the sale of an Irish Red Cross property (50 Merrion Road) in mysterious circumstances with no alternative refugee home purchased as was the stated intention of the sale at the time. Where did this money go? Why was no alternative refugee home purchased?

    At the very least an urgent independent investigation is required. The assistance of the Gardai or consideration of asking for their assistance should form part of any independent investigation's considerations.

    It is more than clear that the Irish Red Cross Central Council and Executive Committee has failed in its fiduciary duties and responsibilities. Others need to protect the Irish Red Cross. They need to be brought in immediately.

    Heads need to roll before any confidence can be restored in the Irish Red Cross.

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  9. Anonymous11:33 AM

    Anniversary:

    It is one year ago today when Deputy Finian McGrath in Dáil Éireann raised the “urgent matter” regarding the management of the Irish Red Cross and particularly the dismissal case of Mr. Noel Wardick.
    It is now nearing the deadline for the updating of IRC statutes as agreed in November 2007 at the council of delegates of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
    Time is standing still for the IRC because there is no evidence of progress.

    Recently the Irish Red Cross published annual reports for 2009 - 2010 and included financial reports. Auditors should be able to compare the annual report with their audited accounts and indicate any exception if there are any inconsistencies. The auditors did not comment one way or the other so the annual reports need to be taken at face value only.

    Previously the government voted funding for the refugee work carried out at 50 Merrion Road and now we should know the reasons for the sale of the property. Presumably this is in compliance with corporate strategy - if IRC has such a thing?
    As someone who has served the International Red Cross / Crescent in 10 countries overseas, I have never seen such incompetence as in IRC.

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  10. Anonymous1:00 AM

    I believe that a sum of just under 1 Milion was paid to the Irish Red Cross for the property on 50 Merrion Road, the amazing thing about this property is that is also did not appear on the books an records of the Irish Red Cross. Coopers and Lybrand were the accountants at the time, was it this accounting error and the refusal of ex members of staff to (cook) alter the financial records that were the cause of Coopers and Lybrnad to drop the Red Cross. Where did the money go? Is it like the Tsunami money resting in an account somewhere? Awaiting collection. Why was 1 million transfered to a bank which one Board member was a senior official. Is this money still in this institution???? There are more questions than answers.

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  11. Anonymous10:40 AM

    The IFRC General Assemby is taking place in Geneva. It takes place every two years. Word has filtered back from Geneva that the Irish Red Cross Vice Chairman, Tony Lawlor, is in attendance representing the Society.

    Many international Red Cross observers who know the sordid history and record of the Irish Red Cross regarding governance and secret bank accounts and undeclared property portfolios are stunned at the audacity of the Irish Red Cross with not only their failure to resolve these problems but to send the signatory on an undeclared bank account who was caught by internal auditors to represent the Society in Geneva.

    The whole matter is cringe worthy embarrassing. Those in Geneva will be polite and diplomatic but many are incredulous at the Irish Red Cross. The message is loud and clear: misgovernance, outrageous lengths of board service and keeping undeclared bank accounts are acceptable to the Irish Red Cross and anyone engaged in such activities will not only not be held to account they will be allowed offically represent the Society at the highest levels.

    How much of the Society's hard earned money is being spent on Mr. Lawlor's trip to Geneva (flights, hotels, food etc etc)???

    Mr. Lawlor dodged a bullet over his undeclared bank account and only for cowardice and fear amongst his board colleagues he would have been foreably removed. His resurrection is well and truly underway and is being permitted and facilitated by the current Chairman and Secretary General. A truly very sad development.

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  12. Anonymous1:37 AM

    The new Secretary General appears to be following truly in the steps of his some of his more compliant predecessors and conceding that Mr. Lawlor is top dog who is not to be crossed. Certain well known individuals in the Irish Red Cross have no credibility, and certainly no conception of how much damage they have done over the years to the good name of the Red Cross. The top Brass in Geneva know fully who these people are and what they are like, and as was said in another comment, they will be polite and courteous like all good diplomats as they were when O Callaghan and Forde visited earlier this year. But they will insure they will keep their distance. The European Court of Human Rights could be the next port of call for Irish Red Cross in Europe as the defendant. Time will tell.

    As with the Euro crisis and just like the Germans and French the IFRC wishes to avoid contagion and damage from a discredited periphery national Red Cross society like the Irish Red Cross. Lets hope they have more success than the German and French whose economies and banks are under serious threat because of iditotic policies under taken by bankers in Ireland. Corrective action was taken against many of these bankers in that they were fired. Irish Red Cross needs to learn a lesson from this.

    Just like the Germans now tell the Irish government what to do so as to ensure they dont mess up any more the IFRC needs to intervene directly at the Irish Red Cross in order to remove certain board members. If they dont IFRC will be badly damaged as the Irish Red Cross contagion spreads.

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  13. Anonymous1:47 AM

    The Irish Government has announced that it is cancelling in full the €900,000 annual grant it gives annually to the Disability Association of Ireland. The reason given is that most of the money has been spent on salaries and administration. The Minister said it was more important going forward that grants were spent on people who were actually disabled. The Disability Association was said to be reeling from the decision

    Interestingly the Irish Red Cross annual grant from the Government is also in the €900k mark (€951,000 precisely) and interestingly every penny of it goes on salaries and administration. Could a similar fate await the Irish Red Cross?

    Given the serious snub Irish Red Cross gave the Minister in May this year when they refused to remove people like Tony Lawlor and Ted Noonan from the Irish Red Cross board the Minister may use a cut in the grant to lash back and to send a clear message to the Irish Red Cross leadership.

    If the grant is cut the sad thing is only staff will suffer. Those responsible for the misgovernance and dysfunction at the Irish Red Cross will remain in place and will continue to get their all expenses paid trips to Geneva.

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  14. Anonymous3:06 AM

    A number of calls in Dail Eireann, Ireland's parliament, for the Irish Red Cross Vice Chairman to resign and what does Irish Red Cross do? It sends the Vice Chairman to the bi-annual IFRC General Assembly to represent the Society at this global gathering of Red Cross national societies. Its shocking and humiliating. All the important people in Geneva know there has been calls in the Dail for the Vice Chairman to resign and why. Its too painful to even contemplate what they must think of us.

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  15. Anonymous3:14 AM

    At least 18 undeclared Irish Red Cross properties is a total disgrace. A scandal.

    As a member I want to know why the supposed Irish Red Cross leadership has not written to every member explaining this situaton, explaining who is responsible, how these people will be held to account, how Irish Red Cross plans to inform the families who donated the houses, how they intend to apologise to these families and when will we, as members, be given a detailed list of all Irish Red Cross properties, their location, their physical condition and what the properties will be used for in the future.

    If this is not done immediately then Donal Forde and David O' Callaghan will have confirmed for me what I already suspect and that is that under their watch Irish Red Cross will remain a fundamentally dysfunctional secretive untrustworthy organisation.

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  16. Anonymous8:51 AM

    Junkets to Geneva, undisclosed properties worth millions of Euros, 49 undisclosed bank accounts, calls in Dail for senior board members to resign, misuse of hundreds of thousands of overseas donations, awarding of IT contract to UK company, secrecy, lack of transparency, goverance as bad as anything seen anywhere etc etc. I mean does it never end with Irish Red Cross.

    The Sunday newspapers report that despite the defeat of the referendum on Oireachtas inquiries the Dail Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will be granted powers to investigate the Irish banking collapse and call in those responsible. This could prove embarrassing for at least one Irish Red Cross leader who will end up appearing before the Public Accounts Committee Hearing on two different occasions. Firstly when PAC investigates the Irish Red Cross for financial irregularities and secondly when PAC investigates those responsible for the banking collapse.

    This will be awkward in the extreme and will definitely raise eyebrows on the PAC when they see someone appear before them for two completely separate investigations. If the person involved has any enemies within Irish Red Cross he had better be prepared for them to use this against him. Although its unlikely this individual has developed any enemies as nobody's authority or dominance has been challenged or threatened by this person.

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  17. Anonymous4:04 AM

    Extract from Irish Red Cross Facebook page and a member of the public's comment:

    wonderfull work being done by the Irish Red Cross abroad, but just wondering who monitors the society here at home, I would like to join, but I have been told that it is impossibe to get on within the red cross on merit or skill, its not wot u know it;s who ya know and bullying seems to be accepted,
    19 hours ago.

    Irish Red Cross: Hi We would be delighted to have you join. If you would like to pop me an email (communications@redcross.ie) with your name and area I will send you on the details of your local branch and details of how to join. I am sorry to hear you have heard bad things about the society but would like to assure you that bullying is in no way accepted. Hope to welcome you on board soon.

    End Extract.

    I am delighted to see that the Irish Red Cross still attracts interest from potential volunteers and rightly so. This blog and its many many supporters consistently state that the Red Cross Movement is one of the most respected humanitarian organisations in the world. The Irish Red Cross is the Irish nation's contribution to this organisation. Unfortunately the IRC Board have actively destroyed the Irish Red Cross' reputation at home and abroad. Each and every one of them is accountable, but alas absolutely none of the Board members have been held accountable for the litany of failures at the Irish Red Cross. What has happened for over 20 years is the consistent bullying and abuse of staff and volunteers who have spoke up and fought to remedy these failures.
    So while I am delighted to see that the IRC still attracts interest from potential volunteers, I am absolutely thrilled that this interest includes the caveat of an extremely pertinent question. The commenter on facebook very directly refers to the IRC's woeful track record of bullying. The IRC response is the usual one liner brush aside. However for me this question from a member of the public represents the best of what this nation has learnt over the last 5 years. The question represents the well informed public who demand transparency, demand accountability and are absolutely not afraid to ask the tough questions. I absolutely applaud that person on facebook; firstly for the interest in the Red Cross and secondly for ensuring that they are satisfied themselves in the way the Irish Red Cross conducts their business before committing time and money to the organisation.
    Unfortunately if that same person continues to ask pertinent questions of the Irish Red Cross on facebook, then the Irish Red Cross will simply ban them from commenting on the IRC page. That is the level of transparency of the Irish Red Cross.
    However seeing this question posed on facebook is a wonderful victory. The message is getting out there. Those with a stranglehold on the IRC have for so long dodged and weaved and repressed all attempts at reform for too long. They cannot and will not stop the wave of public outrage that is building and demanding accountability of those in charge at the IRC.

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  18. Anonymous1:49 PM

    Write to every member you have to be joking !

    That would mean letting memebrs know that Merrion Square cared what the membership thought.

    If they don't allow you to know who is on the Central Council whats the chances of allowing you to know anything else? Dream on !

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  19. Anonymous11:45 PM

    "The Irish Red Cross was commended for approaching HIV/AIDS stigma elimination and prevention, taking into account the effect religious beliefs may have on young people’s perception of the issue". This award was given at the recent IFRC conference. What a joke! The Irish Red Cross involved in HIV /AIds Programmes, I would like to remind the readers when not so many years ago the Irish Red Cross refused to work in jails because it would involve working with HIV/Aids inmates. I guess they can even bluff the guys in Geneva.
    Look at the Irish Red Cross record on diversity and that will say it all! Shame on them !

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  20. Anonymous7:19 AM

    Letter in Irish Independent 30th November re RTE:

    "RTE's institutional response to the Prime Time debacle-denial, forced admission of culpability, invisible leadership-has deepened the self inflicted wound. Was the Catholic hierarchy advising them?"

    Well if it wasnt the catholic hierarchy advising them it must have been the Irish Red Cross because they epitomise words such as 'denial' 'forced admission of culpability' and 'invisible leadership'

    Very ironic that both RTE and Irish Red Cross totally disgraced themselves on Prime Time!

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  21. Anonymous7:39 AM

    In fairness to Irish Red Cross if they were awarded for their HIV/AIDS work in Ireland then they deserve to be congratulated as do those individuals involved in the project. The Blog wishes the project and staff involved continued success and long may the work continue and grow.

    The International Department of the Irish Red Cross has engaged in HIV/AIDS Projects in Africa since around 2007 so it is encouraging to see such activities addressed in Ireland as well.

    It is critically important that the Irish Red Cross in Ireland not be solely seen as a first aid or ambulance based organisation. It must be seen as a humanitarian organisation as per its mandate in law and it must engage in a wide range of humanitarain activities only one of which relates to first aid/ambulances. It is incumbent on branches to ensure they offer and provide funding for a wide range of services and not simply first aid training/ambulance cover. First Aid Units report to their branches. They are not THE branch. They are a sub component of a branch, nothing more. This is clearly stated in the Rules of the Society. Its unfortunate that many branches are in fact no more than a first aid/ambulance unit, providing no other humanitarian service to their community.

    As per the comment posted above if there are individuals within Irish Red Cross, whether at board level or on staff, who in any way ever prevented the Irish Red Cross engaging with prisons in the past or assisting those persons who might be infected with HIV they should be immediately removed from the Society. Such narrow minded prejudice and discrimination should be anathema to the Irish Red Cross. If it exists it must be rooted out and dealt with ruthlessly.

    Continued best wishes to those involved in the HIV/AIDS project and the Blog hopes that the Central Council ensures such important work is properly and adequately funded.

    The Blog

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  22. Anonymous4:10 AM

    At the 31st International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in Geneva the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) will introduce a resolution proposing to strengthen the legal protection of victims of armed conflict. Will those in attendance representing the Irish Red Cross Society detail at this conference how the Irish Red Cross misallocated hundreds of thousands of euro, each year from Appeals for money for the victims of conflict and disasters? It is interesting that the Irish Red Cross will be present in light of the fact that as a National Society Irish Red Cross played a zero part in the internal armed conflict within it's own Country (apart from sending £100,000 to help establish the Provisional IRA). This piece of knowledge will not be lost on those in attendance. This and the fact that the Irish Red Cross has sent a clear signal to Geneva that the national Vice Chairman is once again calling the shots and back in charge

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  23. Anonymous4:16 AM

    I hope there will be at least one Central Council member at the upcoming CC meeting on the 10th December who demands an explanation from David O' Callaghan, Irish Red Cross Chairman, why the Society was represented in Geneva at the Red Cross General Assembly by the national Vice Chairman whose 21 years in the position represents a massive breach of good governance practice not to mention his central role in the tsunami Tipperary bank account scandal. As has been said in other comments those in Geneva know all about the national Vice Chairman and his record at the Irish Red Cross. O'Callaghan and Donal Forde may well try telling anyone in Geneva who will listen to them that they are reforming Irish Red Cross. With the national Vice Chairman standing right beside them not a soul in Geneva will believe a word of it.

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  24. Anonymous1:45 AM

    LETS MAKE THIS SIMPLE ?


    DEAR MR LAWLOR,


    Resign! I have no confidence in you as national Vice Chairman of the Irish Red Cross and what you have done at the Society. You should be ashamed not only over the Tipperary bank account Tsunami money, but also over the Irish Red Cross record on the Somalia money, the Armenian money, the Haiti money and all the other monies held for years not used for the purpose for which it was intended. This is the tip of the iceberg and you are not alone in the list of those who have should hold their heads in shame! I ask you to resign and allow fresh blood and new ideas into the Irish Red Cross. Your 21 years service is in outright breach of good governance. Your continued presence on any Irish Red Cross Committee is indefensible. You have become a terribly divisive figure and this is not in the interests of the Irish Red Cross. Noel Wardick did so much right in exposing you! He and others paid a heavy price in shining a bright light on the truth at the Irish Red Cross. The future of the Irish Red Cross must be safeguarded. The Society has been called before the Dail Public Accounts Committee to answer concerns on financial irregularities and misuse of resources. This is a terrible indictment on the Irish Red Cross. Forcing the Chairman and Secretary General to defend your presence on the Irish Red Cross Central Council and Executive Committee at this hearing is grossly unfair, selfish and will bring humiliation and shame on the Society. It is time for you to go and resign from ALL Irish Red Cross committees. Please do so and please do so in time so that it can be announced at the 10th December 2011 Central Council meeting.


    Gerard Moyne
    Life Member Irish Red Cross

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  25. Anonymous4:52 AM

    The fact that the national Vice Chairman of the Irish Red Cross was allowed represent the Society at the international Red Cross General Assembly in Geneva demonstrates beyond doubt that the Chairman and Secretary General have raised the white flag and surrendered on accountability. After only a few months in their roles they have returned the Vice Chairman to his former glory and ensured that he remains the most dominant and powerful person at the Irish Red Cross and they have shown they fear him and will not resist him. For the Chairman and Secretary General allowing the Vice Chair go to Geneva was a disasterous decision. They may not see it because they do not properly understand the internal dynamics of the Society but for those of us who do its more than obvious who is back in charge now, and it is not the SG or Chairman. The SG and Chairman may control the little enclave of 16 Merrion Square in Dublin and the staff who work there but make no mistake they do not control the Irish Red Cross. The recent decision to allow the Vice Chair go to Geneva proves that beyond doubt. Nothing has changed. Fear and cowardice have ensured that.

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  26. Anonymous4:54 AM

    Board resignations in Goal over governance and financial concerns. Seems Irish Red Cross may not be alone in being a dysfunctional charity with big egos in situ well past their sell by date

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  27. Anonymous8:43 AM

    To my fellow members of the Irish Red Cross,
    If you are unhappy with the senior levels of the society then please make yourselves familiar with the election processes. The Central Council is made up, in part, of Area Representatives. Theses representatives are elected at area level by branch and area members and their role is to represent (hence the title!) us the members and OUR concerns.


    The vice-chairman, treasurer etc are elected from the elected by the elected. So simply put: If YOU are unhappy with actions of the Representative from your area then vote in someone else. If you do not know how to go about this then keep asking questions until you get the answers!

    I am only one person in one area but together you and I are Irish Red Cross.

    Make you voice heard!

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