Independent TD Mattie McGrath has called on the Minister of State for Disability Issues, Finian McGrath, to seek an immediate suspension of HSE plans to remove the rehabilitative training (RT) allowance to disabled school leavers. Deputy McGrath was speaking after a number of Disability and Voluntary sector groups expressed their anger at the decision of the HSE to scrap the allowance, worth €31.80 a week per students who go on to participate in training schemes:
“This is clearly a case of the HSE picking on a vulnerable minority of school leavers in order to make up for its own spectacular budgetary incompetence.
I share the sense of frustration and bewilderment that the disability sector is feeling after this shock announcement.
It simply beggar’s belief that disabled young people who are trying their best to go on and fully participate in the training and employment sector should be targeted in this way.
What I want to know is; is this the HSE’s way of clawing back the €2 million it gave to Rehab recently?
Certainly, we need clarity as to why such a small allowance, paid as I understand it to just several hundred young disabled persons, was selected.
I will be writing to Minister of State McGrath asking him fully engage with the concerns of the various disability groups and the service users themselves in order to see if there is not a more appropriate way forward in terms of cost savings within the HSE,” concluded Deputy McGrath.