Over 3,300 Uplift members are calling on Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and HSE CEO Paul Reid to take action for disabled people who are left without Personal Assistance support.
A growing Uplift petition of 3,363 signatures, calls on the HSE to provide the Personal Assistance hours that Daniel Airey needs to live a fulfilled life. Daniel, who has cerebral palsy and is a wheelchair user, has just launched the campaign.
Many disabled students, like Daniel, are just months away from being left without the assistance they need to be able to get out of bed, meet friends or get a job.
The Department of Education cancels Personal Assistance (PA) once disabled students leave education. Re-applying for Personal Assistance through the HSE can mean years of delays – or rejection of requests – leaving many people unable to live independent and fulfilled lives.
Without the support of a PA, 24 year old Daniel – a talented podcaster and broadcaster with a bright future – could end up living in a nursing home. His experience has been one of frustration – repeatedly having to submit the same documentation to prove that he needs supports to live.
Currently, over 4,000 disabled people continue to live in institutional settings with many younger people under the age of 65 in nursing homes.
As family carers grow older or unwell, disabled people who need personal assistance fear they will be placed in nursing homes, rather than be able to live and thrive independently. Daniel, aged 24, fears this could be what he is facing.
Uplift campaign starter, Daniel, says;
“Throughout my academic life I had access to a Personal Assistant (PA) to help me navigate my studies. Now that I’m out of the education system, that support has disappeared and my life is on hold until I get access to the right supports. This is more than allowing me to work on my own terms, this is about allowing me to live my life on my own terms. I’m not the only one.”
The government is in hot water over its treatment of disabled people after the UN condemned Ireland last year for failings on disabilities legislation.
This month a new housing plan to support people to live independently was brought forward by the government, but right now people like Daniel still can’t even get the supports they need to live independently at home. While much of Daniel’s life is put on pause without these supports, he’s calling on Minister Stephen Donnelly and HSE CEO Paul Reid to intervene now to improve the process of application and allocation of personal assistance hours for him and many others who are leaving the education system.
People can add their support to the campaign to get Daniel Airy the Personal Assistance hours he needs by signing the petition on Uplift here:
Contact for further details:
Daniel Airey, MyUplift petition starter: 086 8716555
Michelle Byrne, Uplift Community Campaigner: 086 1303100
Image attached of Daniel Airey
Uplift is a people-powered campaigning community of over 338,000 people in Ireland. Each day thousands of people take small actions together, such as signing petitions or contacting their TDs, to help build a more equal, sustainable and just Ireland.
Uplift petition calling for PA Hours
Uplift website: https://www.uplift.ie/