Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD tells Minister McGrath to ‘Get a Grip’
Speaking ahead of International Day for Persons with Disabilities, this Sunday 3rd December, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Disabilities Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD, expressed his frustration at the lack of progress made by Government to tackle the massive obstacles faced by people living with a disability in Ireland.
Teachta Ó Caoláin said;
“Last year we were assured that the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) would be ratified by December 2016. Low and behold, here we are a year from that promised deadline and it still hasn’t been ratified! This is truly shameful.
“Budget 2018 was another failed attempt by the Government to address the significant barriers that people living with a disability face on a day to day basis.
“The reality remains that poverty levels amongst those who live with a disability are much higher due to inadequate income supports and the additional costs that come with having a disability. Educational attainment amongst disabled persons is much lower than that of the general population at all levels.
“The results of Census 2016 showed that the unemployment rate amongst persons with a disability was 26.3%, more than double the 12.9% rate for the population as a whole.
“Almost 50% of people living with a physical disability experience difficulty with going outside the home alone due to inadequate transport provision. The list goes on.
“If the Government had a genuine desire to improve the lives of the most vulnerable in society then they would invest in the services and supports that would make a real difference in their lives.
“The Government and the Minister of State with responsibility for Disability Issues, Finian Mc Grath, need to get a grip. Enough of the empty rhetoric. Invest in disability services and supports. Ratify the UNCRPD and make equality the priority."