Reviewed by Paul Horan, Lecturer School of Nursing and Midwifery Trinity College Dublin


Social and disability policy has been an area of much heated and engaging debate over the past years and more intensely in recent months. The publication of this text is timely with the emergence of amended legislation on disability issues. I found this text accessible and easy to read—the book is informative and accurate in its detail.

The text charts the emergence and developments within social and disability policy over the past three centuries. Chapters address, in sequence, the following issues:

Disability Policy in Ireland – Education Policy – Employment Policy – Social Security and Disability – Access and Independent Living – Health Services and Disability – Gender and Disability – Ethnicity and Disability – Ageing and Disability – The mixed economy of welfare and disability – Poverty and Disability: A Northern Ireland Perspective – An Emerging Rights Perspectives for Disabled People in Ireland: an Activists view – Towards free and inclusive societies for people with disabilities.

As somebody with a keen interest in the study of health and social care policy I will share this text with my students as an invaluable reference and resource for beginning to explore social and disability policy in Ireland. I would recommend this book to teachers and scholars of social and healthcare policy. I think every politician and policy writer should purchase this book as a reference, so that on some occasions they might endeavour to get the facts and figures they frequently roll out right on disability issues. Most importantly, this book offers people with disabilities and their families a veritable almanac of information relating to the realities of living with disabilities in Ireland in a post modern world. I think the authors are to be congratulated for bringing the many and differing information strands which relate to social and disability policy together in one neat volume.

DISABILITY AND SOCIAL POLICY IN IRELAND edited by Suzanne Quin and Bairbre Redmond (2003). University College Dublin Press, Dublin. ISBN 1 900621 93 2. Paperback, €18.00 (stg£14.95).


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