Friday, April 28, 2017
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Frontline Issue 101

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The National Federation of Voluntary Bodies, providing services to people with intellectual disability, has a number of key messages to all intending candidates for national elections:

1. Throughout the years of economic austerity, people with intellectual disability have been disproportionately adversely affected as there has been little or no investment in the sector since 2008. 2. In the period of economic recovery now being experienced in Ireland, it is imperative that we prioritise those who have been significantly disadvantaged. 3. Significant unmet and changing needs exist for people with intellectual disability: Addressing these needs requires total political commitment and substantial investment.

My journey to Brussels to the European Parliament supported by Cheeverstown House.

I travelled to the EU parliament in Brussels on November 17th 2015. The conference was organised by Inclusion Europe and it concentrated on Article 19 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. The focus of the conference was on supporting people with an intellectual disability to live independent lives in their communities.

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A motion from Finian McGrath TD.

The following motion was moved by Deputy Finian McGrath on Tuesday, 15 July 2014: That Dáil Éireann: notes: — the vital role people with a disability play in Irish society; — that 45% of people with disabilities experienced income poverty; — that 36% of people with a disability experienced basic deprivation;

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As we approach General Election 2016, Máiríde Woods gives us her wish-list for improvements in services for people with disabilities in post-austerity Ireland.

The season of politicians knocking on our doors is with us again. So - even if we don't think they're Santa Claus, what do we say to them about disability? Some things have changed for the better - people with disabilities are more visible and appear to have more rights, assistive technology is much better than it was. There's more data. But many problems are intractably the same as twenty years ago when I was personally involved. Lists are in fashion at present, so here's mine.

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We sought submissions from candidates in the forthcoming elections, to state what they or their party will do for people with disabilities if elected to government. Deputy Sean Fleming TD, Fianna Fáil, replied stating his party’s intentions…

Deputy Séan Fleming from Fianna Fáil has a strong record on enhancing and promoting the rights of people with disabilities. During our time in Government, there was a dramatic change in terms of legislation, planning, specialist service provision and access to mainstream services and activities for people with disabilities....

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Senator Mary Moran, Seanad Spokesperson for Disability and Equality, outlines her focus regarding the concerns and requirements of people with intellectual disabilities.

Since entering Seanad Éireann in 2011, I have committed myself to raising the concerns and highlighting the issues expressed by individuals and groups advocating on behalf of those with an intellectual disability and their families.

All the latest news from our friends at Inclusion Ireland.

Inclusion Ireland will be launching a comprehensive information pack for the upcoming General Election which will take place in early 2016. Inclusion Ireland has already produced an Election Manifesto called ‘A Disability Manifesto for Equality and Human Rights – Intellectual disability issues for the 32nd Dáil’.

Veronica Crosbie and Ana Wardell review a striking theatre experience at the Axis Theatre, Ballymun, involving service users from St. Michael’s House, Dublin.

Poignant, beautiful, lyrical: these are words that come to mind when recalling Love | Loss | Life, an ensemble piece which ran in early November at the Axis Theatre, Ballymun, Dublin, starring users of St Michael’s House Service Dublin, and directed by Nicola Kealy of Rhythm Room, whose mission is making theatre accessible to all.