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Cut: Two Disability Payments

Fitted

Wednesday February 27 2013 04:51 PM

Mobility Allowance and Motorised Transport Grant Scratched

The Department of Health announced today that the Mobility Allowance and the Motorised Transport Grant will no longer be available to people with disabilities. The Department states that under the Equal Status Act the payments were unlawful. They have also stated that alternative schemes will be considered, ring-fencing the €10.6 million currently used in the schemes.

People with MS and other disabilities have come to rely on these payments to live from month to month. Having money to assist with transport means other income can be used to buy food, fuel and essential medical supplies. Added to the on-going nationwide cuts and taxes experienced by everyone, people with MS and other disabilities already bear a greater burden relating to the cost of their disability. Additional medical charges, transport costs and equipment purchase places greater pressure on people with disabilities to make ends meet.

Ava Battles, Chief Executive of MS Ireland says a few hundred people with Multiple Sclerosis will be affected by the cuts and there removal will limit people’s ability to participate in society,

“The payments enable people with disabilities to take a more active role in their family life, work life and local community. Taking away people’s right to social participation diminishes their quality of life and ability to contribute to society. For the few hundred people with MS we estimate are in receipt of these payments, we know many will suffer if an alternative, appropriate scheme is not introduced soon.”

The Mobility Allowance is a means tested payment of €206 a month aimed to supplement a disabled person income to assist them with various transport needs such as taxis to hospital appointments, community activities etc. The payment is particularly important in areas without good public transport. The allowance will cease in four months. The Motorised Transport Grant is a means tested payment given to assist a disabled person purchase a second hand car to enable them to continue working and taking part in community life.

MS Ireland is currently working with the Disability Federation of Ireland to ensure the money from the scheme is used to establish and run replacement schemes within the next four months. 

Read more from the Irish Times today.

Do you currently get the payment? If so, what does it mean for you? Please leave your comments below.

Author: MS Ireland

Tags: disability, allowances, transport

Comments

Sean Brady

Wednesday February 27 2013 19:30

The Motorised Transport Grant has been of great benefit to me as it has helped me to continue working part-time and to participate in family life.

My car is very important to me as it gives me a great deal of independence.

The proposed abolition of this useful financial resource is yet another attack by a government who obviously don't care about people with disabilities in Ireland.

Burn a few bondholders? Not when you can burn someone less fortunate! What a great country we all live in!

Liz Hooley

Thursday March 07 2013 16:17

Hi I dont get the allowance but i do know that it will put major stress to those who rely on it. The stress for people with ms can cause a major relapse. Is there anything we can do to stop this cut.

Keith

Tuesday March 12 2013 12:40

i have ms eight years now and i feel every year since things are getting harded with all the cuts that are been made to payments i could not afford to pay for my medicine last month so i had to go without and suffer the pain the increase in the payment for medicine from 50 cents per it item to 1.50 per item must seem like nothing to them but it means pain and suffering to me.

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