Fianna Fáil TD for Donegal Charlie McConalogue has called on the Minister for Health to urgently deliver a replacement scheme for the Mobility Allowance & Motorised Transport Grant.

This week marks five years since both schemes were removed by the previous government leaving people with disabilities with no support since 2013.

Deputy McConalogue commented, “People with disabilities have been left completely in the lurch by the removal of these schemes.  There is now no support from the state to help them address the challenges they face on a daily basis.

“The Mobility Allowance provided the opportunity for people with disabilities to get out and about without having to be fully dependent on family members, neighbours or friends while the Motorised Transport Grant assisted those with a disability adapt a vehicle.

“Five years ago, it was decided that both schemes would be closed and merged under the new Transport Support Scheme. Despite the time that has passed, the details of the replacement scheme are yet to be announced.

“Meanwhile, the Government has promoted the Disabled Drivers & Passengers scheme as a viable alternative while the Transport Support scheme is being established. However, the rigidness of this scheme is causing undue anguish as people with severe disabilities are being told they are not eligible.

“The importance of establishing the Transport Support Scheme was acknowledged under the terms of the Programme for Partnership Government, however I am very disappointed that the Minister for Health and his colleagues have failed to make real progress on this longstanding issue.

“The constant delays are no longer acceptable – I along with my party colleagues will be pressing this issue with Ministers Simon Harris and Finian McGrath to speed up the process and ensure that a replacement scheme is brought in as soon as possible”, concluded Deputy McConalogue.