Conway-Walsh Responds to Fianna Fail Statement on Home Help Hours in Mayo
Fianna Fails protestations over the 9,000 hours cut from Home Help Hours in Mayo since 2012 by Fine Gael run hollow when they themselves cut 32,000 hours of home help in the county in just one year period from 31st August 2009 to 31st August 2010 according to Sinn Féin General Election Candidate Rose Cllr. Conway-Walsh.
Responding to the Fianna Fail statement Cllr. Conway-Walsh said:
“If it wasn’t so serious it would be amusing to see the very party that cut 32,000 hours of home help in one year from the most vulnerable people in this county now criticizing Fine Gael for finishing off what they started by cutting an additional 9,000 hours.”
“In 2010 I submitted a PQ through our Health Spokesperson Deputy Caoimhghín O Caoláin requesting the number of home help hours cut in the county. In October of that year I got my answer – 32,000 hours. The reason I asked the question was that under the instructions of Fianna Fail, HSE inspectors went through this county and cut these hours from the elderly, sick and disabled. This was their answer to filling the financial black holes left by their disastrous economic policies that bankrupted this Country. The reduced home help expenditure in 2010 in Mayo was €507,000 as confirmed by the HSE.”
“This was in spite of me heading a community action group that organised public meetings and petitions throughout the county to get Fianna Fail to see the folly of their ways.”
“The further cutting of 9,000 hours by Fine Gael when their TD’s in Mayo promised again in 2010 that they would reverse these cuts is just another broken promise to them. But to the thousands of elderly and disabled who are told they are not even worth one full hour of home help it means hospitalization, distress and anguish to them and their families. Fine Gael TD’s who have since been promoted even pledged to seek meetings with HSE Managers at the time to explain the impact of these severe cuts. Now we know it was all pretence just to get elected.”
“Having home help workers running around spending an half hour in one house and 30 minutes in another house does not provide a holistic and effective approach to community care. In the meantime, family carers are at their wits end, elderly and disabled people living alone are fearful and hospitals and nursing homes don’t have enough beds to accommodate people who could be living at home if they were given full community supports. The half a million euros saved in 2010 has been wasted many times over. It is past time resources were put back into our community services and our district hospitals to deliver proper healthcare to local communities. Socially and Economically it is the only way forward.”