Question No: 69 Ref No: 40144/15

To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the position regarding the opening of the promised Community Welfare Office for Naas, County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the matter.

– Anthony Lawlor.
* For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 17th November, 2015. 
In the context of the enhanced services provided nationally as part of Pathways to Work initiatives the Department re-engineered its business model to support the delivery of local services across all business streams, including the Community Welfare Service (CWS).
The model of service delivery for CWS in South Kildare was changed from local drop-in clinics where services were only available at designated times each week, to a service accessible by telephone call at all times, followed up by appointments and home visits as required.
The service is supported by an Integrated Reception and Decisions service in the Newbridge Intreo Centre and a commitment that all customer contacts are responded to within one working day is being maintained. In addition, significant improvements in claim processing through the development of the Integrated Decisions model has considerably reduced dependence on Supplementary Welfare Allowance by people awaiting decisions on their claims.
The Naas area operates this CWS model which can facilitate home visits. A further enhancement to the welfare services provided in the Naas area will be made when some minor building works in the Ratheasker Square office have been completed. The enhanced services will enable appointments to be facilitated in the in the Rathasker Square office, where necessary.