Independent TD Mattie McGrath has expressed his deep sense of frustration at the lack of Government action aimed at replacing the Mobility Allowance Scheme. The Scheme was targeted for abolition by the Minister for Health and Minister of State Kathleen Lynch in February due to apparent incompatibility with the Equal Status Act:
“Four months ago this Government left some of the most vulnerable people in our society in shock when they unilaterally announced without consultation the abolition of the Mobility Allowance Scheme. I find it absolutely appalling that despite the promises of the Taoiseach to replace the Scheme, nothing has yet been proposed. Through their inaction they have only increased the uncertainty that exists in the minds of those who receive these payments and so have added insult to injury.”
Campaign groups have strongly criticised the cuts, with the Disability Federation of Ireland calling the Department of Health “a sick bureaucratic monster”. The federation’s chief executive John Dolan said there was no consultation or engagement before the department made the decision:
“Such a tactic has now become the norm for this Government. They remove Schemes upon which people depend for their most basic needs and fail to put in place alternatives. It speaks to the on-going disregard that this Government has. I am today calling on the Taoiseach to realise that these cuts will have a drastic impact on the quality of life of many disabled and socially isolated people and their families, and with that in mind I am urging him to immediately make known what new arrangements are to be in put in place to counter this,” Concluded Deputy McGrath.