Fianna Fáil’s Spokesperson on Disability, Margaret Murphy O’Mahony TD, has said that the failure of the HSE to carry out over 2500 disability assessments on Irish people is a direct contravention of their human rights.
Deputy Murphy O’Mahony was responding to reports in the media that the HSE assessed less than 60% of all those requiring an assessment.
“This is a clear contravention of the 2005 Disability Act, but also of a person’s human rights. The 2005 Act was a progressive, forward thinking piece of legislation, introduced by Fianna Fáil, which for the first time enshrined the rights of people with disabilities,” said the Cork South West TD.
“Minister McGrath must come before the Dáil and explain why the HSE are failing to asses people within the statutory six month period.”
“Finding a solution to this problem will require additional funding from the HSE. The rate of people applying for assessment is continuing to rise, and we must not let it get further out of hand,” said Murphy O’Mahony.
“Prior to being elected as a member of Dáil Éireann, I worked as a Special Needs Assistant. The value of an assessment should not be underestimated. It ensured that children with disabilities received the required supports and services. It ensured that schools put in place systems to ensure that the child received the best possible education.”
“Any delay in receiving an assessment will, I believe, damage the future prospects of a child. That is not acceptable in 2016, and Minister McGrath must get a handle on this situation, and ensure that the statutory requirements are met.”
“Six months is still a very long time to wait for an assessment. It should be the exception to the rule that a child waits six months. The system needs to be more streamlined and efficient.”
“I will seek to raise this issue in the Dáil this week. Answers must be provided by the Minister, and the HSE”, concluded Murphy O’Mahony.