Oireachtas Disability Group Manifesto
Issued on January 16 2020
There is a crisis for people with disabilities and their families:
- 13.5% of the population have a disability.
- By 2026, the number of people with disability will have increased by around 20%.
- 24% of adults with a disability live in consistent poverty, compared to 11% in 2011.
- Just 31% of working age people with a disability are at work, compared to 71% of the general population.
- 27% of the homeless population have a disability- double the rate of the general population.
- 2,136 people with disabilities remain living in residential institutions for people with disabilities.
- Over 1,400 people with disabilities under the age of 65 are inappropriately placed in nursing homes.
- Only 0.3% of all people with disabilities get a Personal Assistance Service. Currently, there is no legal right to personal assistance in Ireland.
- Across 38 services, at least 1,250 parents over the age of 70 are the primary carers of an adult with a disability. Close to 400 of these parents are over 80.
- Services are carrying €40m+ deficits and were informed of a €20m cut to their budgets in 2020.
To address this crisis, commit to:
End disability poverty and unemployment
- Introduce a cost of disability payment in 2020. As an interim measure, increase Disability Allowance by €20 per week pending Indecon’s ‘Cost of Disability’ research.
- Fully implement the Comprehensive Employment Strategy for persons with disabilities.
- Introduce assistive technology passports, at a cost of €1.5m.
- Publish a plan to fully commence the EPSEN Act.
End the housing crisis facing people with disabilities
- Fund housing adaptations and supports, at a cost of €128m.
- Ringfence funding to the HSE for community support packages so that people have a pathway to housing.
- Accelerate the de-congregation process.
- Commit 10% of social housing to accessible housing for people with disabilities.
Fund services and supports
- Fund a multi-annual investment programme of €211m per annum for 5 years to services that allow people with disabilities to live independently in their community.
- Introduce legislation guaranteeing the right to a Personal Assistance Service.
- Resolve the growing deficits of €40m + across disability services.
- Establish a transport support scheme.
Make disability rights a priority
- Taoiseach’s Department to lead on disability.
- Establish a Joint Oireachtas Committee on implementing the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, UN CRPD.
- Fund the Decision Support Service and implement the Assisted-Decision Making (Capacity) Act without delay.
- Commit to direct engagement and resourcing of Disabled Persons’ Organisations so that they can engage effectively in policy development.
 Census 2016.
 NDA (2018), Disability Statistics.
 CSO (2017), Survey on Income and Living Conditions.
 ESRI (2017), Employment Transitions Among People with Disabilities in Ireland.
 Census 2016.
 HSE (2018), Time to Move on from Congregated Settings. Annual Progress Report.
 DCU and DFI (2018), The situation of younger people in nursing homes in Ireland- phase 1.
 HSE (2017), Service Plan 2018.
 National Federation of Voluntary Service Providers (2019).
 Estimated from deficit across National Federation of Voluntary Service Providers and Disability Action Coalition organisations.
 HSE (2019), Service Plan 2020.
 See DFI and Enable Ireland (2016). Assistive Technology for People with Disabilities and Older People: A Discussion Paper.
 €28.38m to restore housing adaptation grant funding to 2010 levels and €100m funding for the Capital Assistance scheme.
 Based on HSE (2018), Transforming Lives: Report on the Future Needs for Disability Services, Working Group 1 estimates.