FF Senator slams latest attack on people with disabilities

Fianna Fáil Senator Denis O’Donovan has described the axing of the
Mobility Allowance and Motorised Transport Scheme as ‘yet another
savage attack on people with disabilities’.
The Fianna Fáil Senator has appealed to the Government to reverse this
‘scandalous cut’, which will result in a 20% reduction in income for
up to 5,000 people with disabilities.
According to Senator O’Donovan, there are many people with
disabilities living in rural areas who are heavily dependent on both
of these schemes and will be badly hit by this cut.
“The fact that Fine Gael and Labour can justify this disgraceful
decision shows just how out of touch they have become. They claim that
these schemes are ‘obsolete’ – but what about the 5,000 people who
will suffer a 20% cut in their income as a result?” the Cork Senator
said.
“I have had numerous calls to my constituency office from people
distressed about the impact of this callous cut. Unfortunately this is
just the latest cut in what has become a sustained attack on people
with disabilities. The disability allowance was cut in Fine Gael and
Labour’s first budget. Home help hours were cut last August and people
had to camp outside Government Buildings to reverse the cut to
personal assistants for people with disabilities. There have been cuts
to the domiciliary care allowance and to the therapies for people with
disabilities. And in the last budget, there was a cut in the respite
care grant.”
Senator O’Donovan has criticised the Government for scrapping the
mobility allowance without having any coherent alternative ready to go
in its place. He said addressing the legal anomaly did not require
axing the scheme entirely, leaving a giant void in its place.
“We are now in a situation where 5,000 people who depend on these
schemes are left extremely distressed and worried about how they will
cope with a 20% cut in their income. Once again the Government has
blindly ploughed ahead with a savage cut without any consultation or
any communication with those affected, and without having any
replacement scheme ready to go.
“Instead of standing up and being upfront with the public, Fine Gael
and Labour’s answer is to just play a pointless blame game that will
do nothing to reassure those who will be badly hit by this cut.
“I am asking the Government to take a step back here and realise the
enormous impact that these cuts will have on the most vulnerable.”

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