Press Notice 9th Oct 2012 Carmel Donovan from Roscommon

Press Notice

9th October 2012

Center for Independent Living, Carmichael House

“I am on the waiting list for personal assistance service for four years, if I had it I would be able to work more hours”. Carmel Donovan from Roscommon

was speaking at the launch of the Center for Independent Living’s Pre-budget Submission at Trinity College on Tuesday. Carmel’s story is, unfortunately, not unique and is becoming more common as cuts to personal assistance services continue to be on the agenda for the HSE. If Carmel had Personal Assistance she could work more hours, as it is she may even have to cut back on the work she is currently doing.

The Center for Independent Living proposes to government that failing to tackle the waiting list for personal assistance service will cost more in the long term not just economically but also socially. These cuts will force people into institutional care and are completely unjustifiable. Personal assistance services save the government up to €209,000 per person per annum when compared with institutional care, and also provide a quality of life that is defined by independence, choice and autonomy.

Personal assistance services are key to living independently for many people with disabilities, and enable the full realisation of equality and rights in society.

With this in mind, the Center for Independent Living launches it pre budget submission today with a key focus on personal assistance and maintaining a decent quality of life for people with disabilities in Ireland. We are calling on the government to

  • Ring-fence the funding of PAS within the wider HSE budget
  • Increase supports to small organisations to deliver PAS regionally
  • Increase the PAS budget to allow more people with disabilities to avail of a PAS.
  • Deal with the waiting list for PAS – this is currently at 1,600 and is equal to the amount of people in receipt of PAS
  • Raise awareness of PAS and simplify the application process to ensure that PAS becomes a realistic option for people with disabilities.

Michael McCabe, Chairperson, Center for Independent Living states, “personal assistance services should not be an additional luxury for people with disabilities, they are a right, and should be respected as such within the context of budget cuts.”

ENDS

CONTACT:

 

Note for Editors

Established in 1992, The Center for Independent Living is comprised of 22 user-led organisations around the country working in partnership with others, committed to all people with disabilities being recognised as equal citizens and achieving equal membership in society.

Click HERE for the Center for Independent Living Pre Budget Submission Document Pre-Budget Submission 2012.pdf