ADI Stakeholders Forum 2023

July 29th, 2023

Message from Albert Mulligan. Chairperson, ADI Stakeholders Forum 2023.

As Chairman of the Stakeholders Forum, I am very grateful for this opportunity to address ADIs on the topics and issues that we have dealt with during our first year of our current forum. We are all very aware of how the pandemic affected our industry as a whole and on each of us on a personal level. We offer our condolences to any ADI and their family who may have lost a loved one during this time and hope that everybody has emerged from this dark time of lockdowns and restrictions in a positive way.

It is a great relief that we have now returned to a semblance of normality and that we are back helping our learners achieve their safe driving goals. It is a great credit to all
ADIs that we have played our part in reducing the waiting lists and have worked many late nights and weekends to facilitate the learners in a remarkably safe manner given the challenges of covid restrictions. As a forum committee, we try to represent the interests of all the ADIs in the country and can only play this role if all qualified ADIs engage with us on a regular basis and we appreciate all of those who have done so to date.

There have been a few challenges and disappointments for us in the past year with the removal of the QQI level 6 standard for newly qualified ADIs perhaps being the largest one. However, there are many courses available for the newly qualified ADI to obtain the QQI qualification. In the immediate future the largest issue that affects our daily efforts is the reform of the EDT system. As ADIs who deal with the system every day we all recognise that the impression twelve sessions is all that’s required is at best unhelpful. We can play our part by emphasising the importance of lessons between EDT sessions but unfortunately as individuals in a large system we are all to easily ignored and even accused of blatant profiteering.

The other looming crisis on the horizon is the change in our roads and with the advent of electric cars. The need to migrate from manual to automatic vehicles in all categories is going to be expensive, for independent sole trader ADIs, who in the next few years face into a personal business decision to go all automatic or try to maintain two vehicles.

It is important to look to the future and we can be incredibly proud that in our daily lives we provide over a million hours of one-to-one road safety training mostly to young people taking their first steps into adulthood. It is a great privilege that we play a part in moulding road safety attitudes that will hopefully last a lifetime with our learners. I am very proud to work in an industry where I can genuinely believe that I am helping people on a daily basis and feel that my ADI colleagues in the industry are likewise motivated and l hope that with the cooperation of all ADIs and the RSA working together through the forum we can continue to improve road safety outcomes for everybody.

Albert Mulligan, ADI Stakeholders Forum 2023 Chairperson.

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