Sinn Fein candidate Cllr Michael Browne has welcomed the statement by party spokesperson on Equality Aengus Ó Snodaigh confirming the party’s commitment of support to people with disabilities and their families.
“I believe that this is an essential commitment for the incoming government”, said the Cashel councillor.
And he continued - “We all remember the scenes of distress last year when cuts were implemented against the disabled. It made me angry at the time to know that the elected government of our nation were happier to cut our most vulnerable citizens to cover the cost of bailing out toxic banks and high risk bondholders.
“But being angry isn’t enough. I’m glad to say that I am standing in this coming election as a candidate for a party that when in government will fully reverse these cruel cuts. I am glad to say that Sinn Féin believes that a political choice to target the wealthy is better than allowing the continuation of extreme austerity measures against our most vulnerable.”
“Should we be elected to government, we are committed to immediately restoring these payments to their 2010 rate levels and to introduce a Cost of Disability Payment on a phased basis, to offset extra costs related to disability and in recognition of disproportionate rates of poverty and unemployment among people with disabilities.
“People with disabilities have been a target for government cuts both directly and indirectly. Their incomes have been cut, services are under increasing strain and funding to the voluntary organisations that provide services and advocate for people with disabilities have also been cut. Sinn Féin identified €150 million to ease the recruitment embargo on the public service which is having a serious impact on service delivery including disability services. We must make these changes if we are to living in a true republic of equals”.