Fianna Fáil TD for Mayo Lisa Chambers has said the Minister for Social Protection and her Department must review Farm Assist Scheme forms to ensure that farmers are not slowed down by red tape when applying for the payment.

Deputy Chambers commented, “My constituency office and advice clinics throughout County Mayo are regularly attended by members of the farming community who require assistance with the farm assist application process.

“These convoluted forms, with all the requirements within, are a yearly ordeal for farmers. It is evident to anyone who has examined or gone through this process that reforms are needed.

“The Farm Assist Scheme was established by Fianna Fáil to provide a valuable payment for low income farmers. While the last Fine Gael led government introduced drastic cuts to the scheme in 2012, Fianna Fáil have managed, under the Confidence and Supply arrangement, to reverse these cuts. 

“The Minister must instruct her Department to review the form to ensure the farm assist application is a swift, simple and fair process for those in the farming community in County Mayo and throughout the country,” concluded Deputy Chambers.