10/15/2012

No Promises Made on Disability Cuts

A Government Minister refused to rule out any further cuts that were made on disability services in the new and upcoming budget. She spoke at the launch of the Disability Federation of Ireland’s pre-budget submission, Minister of State for Disability Kathleen Lynch went on to accept that further cuts might be made throughout the budget. However, she also went on to pledge to do all that she could do in order to ensure that those people with disabilities are going to be well represented in the budget.

“I am not here to give you false promises. I am here to tell you what I can do. It is in all of our interests that we get this agenda completed. I will fight for this budget,” she said. The Disability Federation Ireland vice Chairman John O’Sullivan stated that the budget is going to have to respect that there are people with disabilities that are entitled to experience normal, everyday lives. “This is a critical time for people with disabilities and for the voluntary organisations working with them. We want to send a strong, clear message to the Oireachtas: Budget 2013 must end the erosion of supports that enable people with disabilities to lead full lives as citizens of Ireland.”

The Federation chief executive John Dolan called on the Taoiseach and T├ínaiste to keep their promises that they made to the people with disabilities prior to entering into the Government. “The Programme for Government states, ‘by the end of our term in Government, Ireland will be recognised as a modern, fair, socially inclusive society’. While this Government has not served its full term, the beautifully crafted statement above now seems a distant aspiration for people with a disability and very far removed from their day to day experience,” Mr Dolan said. “Only the Government, with a clear-cut implementation plan to support the National Disability Strategy, can address the injustices which are now emerging. Even in the good times, it was well established that people with disability were more likely to experience poverty and this helps to inform us of the dire circumstances now confronting too many of them.”

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