Offaly TD slams government over disabled people living in poverty
TD Carol Nolan has called on the Government to respond in the forthcoming budget to the conditions of poverty affecting people with a disability.
Speaking today from the constituency the Independent Offaly TD stated that “with over half a million people in the State afflicted with a disability, this issue is not a marginal one."
"It is important when addressing poverty that we also examine the additional obstacles facing those with a disability as the obstacles facing them are substantially greater than those who are abled.”
Speaking in response to the Disability Federation of Ireland (DFI) Pre-Budget submission Deputy Nolan said, "it is quite disturbing to learn of the increase in poverty amongst people with a disability since 2015 as documented by the CSO and equally unacceptable that 69% are unemployed as compared to 29% of abled people."
"The DFI submission also painted a very bleak picture of the physical and social entrapment of people with a disability who are confined to their homes, residential institutions and nursing homes because of the unavailability of assistance supports for independent living. This is inhibiting their participation in education, work and social life.”
The DFI is seeking a modest increase of €20 per week in Disability Allowance; supports for Personal Assistants and Home Support Hours; Assistive Technology Passports; Transport solutions and Student Supports as part of its demands.
Deputy Nolan referred to Ireland’s ratification of the UN Convention on People with Disabilities in March of this year and stated that, “it was made quite clear to the Government at that time that ratification would bring with it a cost to the exchequer. I will be calling in that deal and advocating for a substantial increase in supports for the most vulnerable."
" A society functions better for everyone if everyone can function to the best of their ability and it is in all of our interest to support the independent living of those afflicted with a disability."