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“Scandal that disabled people and families forced onto the streets again” – Ó Caoláin

6 July, 2010 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Sinn Féin Dáil leader and spokesperson on Health & Children, Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD, has said that it is a scandal that disabled people, carers and families have to take to the streets again to protest at savage Government-imposed cutbacks to their services. Speaking on the eve of the national protest in Dublin tomorrow (Wednesday), Deputy Ó Caoláin said:

“The Taoiseach and the Minister for Health & Children must intervene immediately to reverse the savage cuts being imposed by the HSE on services for people with disabilities, including severely intellectually disabled children.

“These cuts are resulting in the termination or drastic curtailment of already limited respite and day care, imposing a huge burden on hard-pressed parents and other carers who must provide 24-hour a day, 7-days per week care.

“The laying off of staff will lead to the re-institutionalisation of disabled people as they will not be able to be supported in community settings. This would be totally contrary to best practice and long-established Government policy.

“Successive Governments, having failed to provide a comprehensive system of care directly, have relied on bodies such as the Brothers of Charity and the Daughters of Charity to make services available. Now their funding is being savagely cut. It is a disgrace.

“The savage cuts to services are forcing disabled people, carers and families to take to the streets in protest. This is a huge scandal and the cuts must be reversed. I offer my full support and solidarity and that of Sinn Féin with Wednesday’s national protest in Dublin called by Inclusion Ireland.”
• Note to Editor: The Inclusion Ireland Protest begins at 12 noon Parnell Square, march to Dáil, Wednesday, 7 July.

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