Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Social Protection Willie O’Dea has said it is disappointing that the Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton has failed to rule out any cuts to Free Travel Scheme.
Deputy O’Dea commented, “While I welcome the Minister’s attempts today to ease the concerns of older people about the government’s review of the free travel pass, it is very disappointing that she stopped short of ruling out any cut to this much valued scheme. She must immediately do so.
“The news that the scheme could be under threat due to a Government review caused anger and distress among thousands of older people who depend on their free travel pass. I was contacted by dozens of people in my own constituency who were deeply concerned that their pass could be removed. If this threat wasn’t real, the Government should not have waited so long to ease their concerns.
“The Minister has insisted that the Government places a high value on the free travel scheme. If that truly is the case, she should have put this issue to bed once and for all today by ruling out any cuts whatsoever.”