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Cancer Services: Deterioration

Part of Opposition Business – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 3:30 pm on 18th October 2016.

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Photo of Pat Sheehan Pat Sheehan Sinn Féin 3:30 pm, 18th October 2016

I thank the Member for her intervention, and I agree wholeheartedly with what she says. Waiting for a diagnosis is a difficult time. Why then did the Opposition, when it was forming its motion, not try to be accurate, instead of introducing this exaggeration and hyperbole? If that is the Opposition that we are going to face over the next few years, God help us all.

I was very disappointed with Jo-Anne Dobson earlier this morning. She said, "there is not enough emotion" here, and, "There is not enough care" among our representatives. Let me say this. I first visited the Bridgewater suite in 2002, when my wife was diagnosed with breast cancer, and I made many visits there, and to the cancer centre, between 2002 and 2006, when my wife died. So do not stand here and tell me that I do not care, and do not presume that nobody else in this House cares. We have listened to enough Members today to hear all of them say how they have been affected by cancer. All of us care.

If people really care, they should work together, be judicious in their language and be accurate with their emotions. The best way to improve the health system we have is for everybody to put their shoulder to the wheel and not make petty political points, because cancer does not discriminate along party political lines. Sin a bhfuil agam.