Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 21 October 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Disability Matters

Aligning Disability Services with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Discussion

Mr. Damien O'Reilly:

People with disabilities always ask why they have to reinvent the wheel the whole time. Why do we always have to push and fight for our rights? It can be very tiring and hard because you just feel you are taking up time fighting and time, generally, that you could spend doing other things with your family and friends. It is just constant heartbreak and arguing for your rights. Ms Kenny talked about the struggle to get adaptation grants. I had to go through all that and it was another fight. I had no accessible bedroom in my family home. In order to work with a PA, I had to build on to my family home.

Again, because of a lack of appropriate grants I had to get a loan from the county council and I must repay that loan every month from my disability allowance. It just goes back to my point that it is a constant battle just to live and get on in life. I hope that answers the question.