A group of well-known disability charities who form The Disability Action Coalition, are inviting all general election candidates in Mayo to an important meeting in Enable Ireland’s service in Castlebar where they will be asked to commit to secure funding for disability services by the next Government.
The Mayo meeting in Castlebar is only one of a number taking place nationwide in a Day of Action being organised by disability charities to highlight the crisis of funding in the sector.
The Castlebar meeting will be hosted by Enable Ireland and will be attended by staff, people using the services and supporters from major disability service providers in Mayo including the Rehab Group, Irish Wheelchair Association, Wester Care, NCBI, ABI and Chime.
It will take place at 10am on Friday,January 31 in Enable Ireland, Safari Centre, Unit 12, N5 Business Park, Moneen, Castlebar, and will be chaired by John O’Sullivan, CEO Enable Ireland.
Speaking ahead of the event O'Sullivan said: "We in the Disability Action Coalition are pressing all candidates and political parties to recognise that our services are in crisis due to underfunding"
"The severe cuts in our funding which were made during the recession have not been restored. This means that many of our members are in deficit, and we want this tackled. We are also dealing with the high cost of regulation and sky rocketing insurance. Pay cuts have not been restored, making it difficult to recruit staff.
"This means that our services are struggling and the entire sector is in crisis. Now, the HSE is telling us of their plans to cut another €20m from the disability budget in 2020. This is not acceptable, and we want a commitment from candidates that they will support the services we provide for many of the most vulnerable citizens in this constituency”, said Mr. O’Sullivan.
Families of people using any disability service in the county are invited to attend the meeting and have their voice heard. All candidates will be asked to pledge to resolve the problem of deficits being faced by many disability service providers, to full pay restoration, and to a secure funding model for the future.