Seanad debates

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Commencement Matters

Motorised Transport Grant

10:30 am

Photo of Finian McGrathFinian McGrath (Dublin Bay North, Independent) | Oireachtas source

I thank the Senator. Of course, I share his concerns about this particular individual. It is an emotional and heartbreaking letter. There are many people in the same situation. I can give a commitment on two things. The first is more support for carers in society because I acknowledge the fantastic unpaid work they do. The Senator mentioned that the particular woman could have taken a legal case but did not. There are a lot of good, civic-minded people in our broader society who act like that and they need our support. I accept the Senator's argument there. Second, I will be saying to the Minister that the legislation to help these 4,700 individuals, who make a massive contribution by looking after our disabled and sick people, must address their needs. It will reduce the cost to the State in the long term, which is a reality I accept. I will bring those key messages back to the Minister, Deputy Harris.

It is important that carers in Irish society are not only acknowledged and commended for their work but supported. The Senator mentioned that the woman in question won a carer-of-the-year award. There are many people like her out there and there are times when society and the State does not provide them with enough support. My job over the next two or three years is to do my best to increase the support they get, increase investment in services, implement the carer's strategy as set out in the programme for Government, and, in this particular case, do something about transport support schemes for people with disabilities.


No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.