Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson Stephen Donnelly has said his party is committed to addressing the funding crisis within disability services.

Deputy Donnelly made the comments following a meeting of organisations working in the disability sector over the weekend in which they addressed general election candidates in constituencies around the country to appeal for more money.

The groups say there is a funding crisis within the sector and that they need at least another €20 million per year between them.

Deputy Donnelly said: “The independent and voluntary sector makes an invaluable and indispensable contribution to the provision of health and social care services especially for people with disabilities. Without them many services would cease.

“Fianna Fail aims to address this funding deficit and provide  additional funding. The hope would be to exempt the disability sector from the ‘efficiency’ cut imposed in January 2020.

The Disability Action Coalition represents Acquired Brain Injury Ireland, Cheshire Ireland, Chime, Enable Ireland, Headway Ireland, Irish Wheelchair Association, Multiple Sclerosis Ireland, National Council for the Blind in Ireland and the Rehab Group.

“We need to do more to help get our health service back working, Fine Gael has failed in their duties to provide as a functioning health service to the people of Ireland,”

“The Independent Review Group, established to examine the role of voluntary organisations in health and social services, found that two thirds of disability services are provided by the sector. They are enduring a funding crisis that is fueling concern about the viability of many organisations,” concluded Deputy Donnelly.