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The Tánaiste has launched his own podcast today.
‘In Conversation with Micheal Martin‘ sees him taking on the role of interviewer as opposed to interviewee.
The first episode dropped today – an hour long interview with Dr. Mark Henry, author of ‘In Fact: An Optimist’s Guide to Ireland at 100’, to discuss how Ireland has developed since the foundation of the State.
The Tánaiste and Mark Henry chat about quality of life in Ireland today through the lens of issues that impact everyone such as economy, education and wellbeing and the many challenges that face the country including housing, climate change, biodiversity and the cost of living.
Dr Henry said people are living longer and that cancer mortality rates are just one of the indicators of how far Ireland has progressed in recent decades.
“Even for those in the 1990s, if you had a cancer diagnosis, for 60% of people that was a death sentence within five years. Unfortunately, they passed away.
“Today that’s reversed. More than six in ten will survive longer than five years. So, we’ve made very good progress.”
On the housing issue, the Tánaiste said “We have to do more, do more faster to deal with the housing issue, particularly for younger people. Because you see amidst all of this optimism and sort of positivity, there are stories underneath this. Notwithstanding wage growth and employment for young people today, to buy a house is still very difficult. And that’s why a whole range of schemes have been made available to try and enable people to afford to buy and to give the option of homeownership, which I think is an important anchor in society, as well as social housing for those that are not in a position to purchase homes. But we do need to get above 30,000.”