Public toilets and the capital | The Irish Times 22nd November 2018

Sir, – At last Dublin City Council has budgeted €200,000 for two public toilets in a location yet to be decided on (Olivia Kelly, “Public toilets in pipeline for city centre after 20-year absence”, News, November 20th).

Isn’t it amazing that this decision should make headlines?

The Irish Times should take some credit for this decision following on its Weekend Review feature “Capital Ideas – 10 ideas for improving Dublin’s infrastructure, economy and daily life” (November 20th).

The Letters Page has raised the issue many times over the years. For publishing my plea for this issue to be addressed, I would like to say thank you. It’s been a long wait. – Yours, etc,

ALICE LEAHY,

Director of Services,

Alice Leahy Trust,

Dublin 8.

Turning public toilets into cafés | Irish Times 7th November 2018

Sir, – The former public toilets on Kevin Street will be brought back into use as a café “as soon as practical” (News, November 5th). Should Dublin City Council not see fit to invest in this much-needed facility there must be a business concern with the foresight to see that public toilet facilities are required in our capital city. The business could then hand it back to be run by Dublin City Council. I noticed recently in the UK budget that there was tax relief for public lavatories. My submission in The Irish Times last Saturday regarding 10 big ideas to make Dublin better includes a description of how Paris provides public toilets staffed by friendly municipal workers. If Paris can do it, what is stopping us from doing it? – Yours, etc,

ALICE LEAHY,

Director of Services,

Alice Leahy Trust,

Dublin 8.

Snobbery and the housing crisis | The Irish Times 16th October 2018

Sir, – Fintan O’Toole’s article “Snobbery is at the root of the housing crisis” raises a very important issue and not just about housing.

Sadly snobbery is alive and well in society and it is good to be reminded of that fact. Education in the broadest sense and good example is the first step to addressing it.

Attitudinal change takes time.

Objections to proposed locations of social housing are often led by elected representatives and this gives oxygen to snobbery and social exclusion.

Your columnist writes: “The way to avoid turning public housing estates into ghettoes is not to stop building them. It is to make social housing available to a much wider range of people and to allocate it in a way that ensures that the communities that inhabit it are varied”

It is plain to see the wisdom of those words. Surely those in a position of responsibility to address the housing problem should reflect on his words and lead by example. It would benefit the wider society. – Yours, etc,

ALICE LEAHY,

Director of Services,

Alice Leahy Trust,

Bride Road,

Dublin 8.