Reacting to comments from the Taoiseach in the Dáil today, Senator Ó Domhnaill said it is not good enough to simply “review” these callous cuts, they must be reversed immediately.
Earlier donegaldaily.com revealed that TD Joe McHugh had led a revolt against the cuts – forcing the review.
And Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the proposed measures, which are now on hold, were included in the bailout deal signed by the last Government.
“There are many unfair measures contained in Budget 2012 which discriminate against the more vulnerable groups in society. Few of these are more cruel than the huge and disproportionate cut to supports for 16 to 24 year olds with disabilities,” said Senator Ó Domhnaill.
“A young adult aged 16-18 is today receiving €188 per week. Under the Fine Gael/Labour plan they will received approximately €71 per week. Those aged 18-24 will see a cut of €88 weekly in their allowance, down to just €100 per week.
“The Taoiseach today confirmed that he will set up a review group to look at the these cuts, and the cuts will be “on pause” in the meantime. This is not good enough. We don’t need a review to tell us that these cuts single out one of the most vulnerable groups, people who are simply not in a position to work and are dependent on State support. To slash their payments by €88 to €100 a week will have an enormous effect on their lives for very little savings to the exchequer.
“Speaking on the radio this afternoon, the Minister for Social Protection has attempted to justify these cuts. I find this incredible, particularly coming from a Labour Party Minister who, just nine short months ago, campaigned on a platform of protecting the vulnerable.
“This is not the time for reviews. Young people with disabilities cannot be left hanging on while their fate is decided. I am calling on the Government to do the right thing, and reverse this decision outright.”
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