Tipperary TDs highlight local paper layoffs in the Dáil

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The Dáil has heard angry pleas from two Tipperary TDs for more to be done to secure the future of local newspapers.

Independent deputies Michael Lowry and Mattie McGrath criticised the decision of Iconic Newspapers to temporarily let go of some staff at its regional titles, including the Tipperary Star, The Nationalist and the Midland Tribune.

In response, Communications Minister Richard Bruton said newspaper takeovers are assessed by the Competitions Commission and his Department.

Deputies Lowry and McGrath raised their concerns about the future of these local papers:

“These publishing titles are being ransacked of their unique, distinctive style and character. Most of these titles are limping along, devoid of funds with no clear direction,” stated deputy Lowry.

Deputy McGrath also highlighted the importance of these titles to local communities. “Four (journalists) were let go in the Nationalist and four in the Tipperary Star, and expecting two or three then to do the work of seven or eight. And driving them like that, with no respect,” he stated.