Connolly demands day care centres be classed as 'vital services'

Galway West TD says 'vulnerable families are at their wits end' due to lack of respite services

Day care centres, and other essential disability services, must be classes as "vital services" with the State having moved into Level 3 lockdown, and with Level 5 a very real and serious possibility.

This is the view of Independent Galway West TD, Catherine Connolly, who said the continued closure of day care centres, and other essential disability services, is a "severe impact" on service users and their families.

"The day centre in Áras Mhic Dara in Carraroe remains closed, as do day centres in Galway and Claregalway," she said. "Vulnerable families are also at their wits end with the lack of respite services."

She has called for such centres to be designated as vital services and for an action plan must be published, and properly resourced, so as to enable the day centres to open "as a matter of urgency".

Reality on the ground in October is 'quite different'

Dep Connolly also signed a cross-party opposition motion calling on the Government to provide the funding required to fully reopen these services. "While the initial closures were understandable given the Covid emergency," she said, "the continued closures are a source of great concern."

In the Dáil, Dep Connolly had sought information as to what analysis had been carried out in this regard. She was informed that the HSE had made attempts to mitigate the difficulties experienced, but despite this, thousands of adults remain without a service.

The HSE also confirmed that each provider had developed a plan for the resumption of day services during August and early September, but "the reality on the ground in October is quite different".


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