DAA News Network

Ireland: Direct payments best choice for disabled people

Posted 17/1-11 at 12.42

Giving disabled people the money to buy their own care (direct payments) would be cheaper and more effective than giving money to charities according to a report commissioned by the Irish government.

The state pays about €1.5 billion for residential and day services in the disability sector each year. Much of this goes to voluntary service providers. However, only 20% of users were satisfied with what they received.

"People should be able to choose their services rather than ‘fit' into what a provider offers," said one unnamed voluntary service provider, quoted in the report. Another said: "[We need] a campaign to change the national culture from [being] charity-based to seeing people with disability as equal citizens."

Another key theme among disabled people was a strong desire to be listened to and consulted by staff and service providers. "Families and some staff should treat us like adults and listen to what we want for ourselves," said one service user.




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