Judge criticises HSE over “ridiculous decision”

The difficulties of a young man who has been failed by the State were heard at Mullingar District Court last week.

Judge Neilan criticised the “ridiculous decision” of the HSE to consider the young man capable of independent living.

Patrick Conlon, who lives with his sister Brigid at 15 Grange Meadows faces a charge of causing criminal damage to a large pane of glass at a house in Grange Village, valued at €150.

Mr Matt Shaw said the 21-year-old had not been taking his medication and said he would have to write to the HSE to inquire about what structures they had put in place for Mr Conlon.

“The court has been here before,” he said, referring to previous failures by the State. Mr Conlon found himself homeless before the court a number of years ago after being placed in independent living which he was unable to cope with.

Mr Conlon said he receives a visit once a week at his sister’s house from the Sisters of Charity.

Brigid Conlon asked the court to give her brother a warning to take his medication. “He hasn’t been taking it at all,” she said.

Mr Shaw said he is slagged about his demeanour when he takes the drugs, which are prescribed for three times a day.

“Can I indicate that the request is by order of the court?” asked Mr Shaw referring to his plan to write to the HSE for a report on the provisions for Mr Conlon. The judge agreed.

Mr Conlon said that mostly he gets on with his sister “but sometimes we don’t”.

His sister pointed out that her brother is “wild sometimes, but he’s alright”.

Ms Conlon later pleaded guilty to driving with no insurance when she was stopped on May 23 2009 at 11.35pm.

The mother of one has no previous convictions and Mr Louis Kiernan asked the court to give her a chance. Ms Conlon said she was wrong to have her child unsecured in the car.

Judge Neilan pointed out that the child would end up on a memorial card if there was an accident which saw it “floating like an envelope on the wind”.

He fined her €200 for that offence and opted not to disqualify her.

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