Clare Fianna Fáil TD, Timmy Dooley TD has deplored the Government’s failure to make any attempt to replace two support schemes for people with disabilities that were discontinued last year.
The Mobility Allowance and the Motorised Transport Grant were closed to new applicants from February 2013. The Government promised last June that these schemes would be replaced.
“There was outcry when the Government discontinued these two important supports for people with disabilities were cancelled last year. Almost 400 people in the Mid West are dependent on the Mobility Allowance alone. They are still in limbo as the Government drags its heels on establishing alternative support schemes. It is completely unacceptable that a year later, these people are still waiting,” said Deputy Dooley.
“The Government first announced the cancellation of these schemes early last year, describing them as ‘obsolete’. It caused great distress among people with disabilities who depend on such support to maintain a level of independence. The Mobility Allowance benefits approximately 5,000 people across the country, including 390 in the Mid West. The schemes account for approximately 20% of their income. It means that not only are the people who are already on the schemes left without any answers, hundreds more have been unable to apply since February 2013. These people were promised that alternative schemes would be set up but we have seen absolutely no hint of this from the Government over the past year.
“The very least that the Government can do is establish a permanent replacement for the Mobility Allowance and Motorised Transport Grants. I am appealing to Fine Gael and Labour to do this as quickly as possible.”