During Cllr Paddy Belton’s Funeral Mass last Sunday, Fr Tom Barden spoke about the plight of farmers and the increase in suicide in the community, because of the mounting difficulties within the sector.
“I am particularly concerned about the situation with farmers and I feel enough hasn’t been done for them,” Fr Barden told Taoiseach Enda Kenny, politicians and mourners who were gathered to bid a final farewell to Cllr Belton, who was from a farming background himself. “The difficulties in the farming sector have been coming for the last year and people are taking their lives because of the situations they are finding themselves in. It it very sad what is happening.”
The parish priest in Kenagh went on to say that he felt that it would be a tribute to the late Paddy Belton if the powers-that-be helped to alleviate some of the difficulties that farmers across the country were now facing. “I never got the chance to speak to Paddy about the problems, but I do know that he would have been very saddened by the situation and I feel it would be a way to honour him, if farmers were helped out,” Fr Barden added. “The farming community is in difficulty and animals are starving because farmers have no fodder for them. They need help now.”