I as a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Disability Matters along with my colleagues in the Regional Group of TDs have tabled two Private Members Debate motions in the Dáil, shedding light on the distressing and unjustifiable disparity in access to personal transport schemes for people with disabilities. The absence of a fair and sufficient personal transport scheme is a long-standing concern that demands immediate attention.

At the recent launch of their annual report for 2022, the Ombudsman, Mr Ger Deering, expressed his strong disapproval of the Government’s actions, labelling their inaction as shameful. Despite repeated commitments made by the Government, minimal progress has been made in the past decade to ensure equitable access to essential support.

The Regional Group members firmly assert that individuals with disabilities require affordable personal transportation access. However, many people with disabilities are confined to their homes, and people with disabilities are being denied the necessary assistance to live independently and actively participate in our communities due to a lack of transportation support that caters to their unique needs.

“Despite the introduction of two motions by the Regional Group in February 2022 and May 2023, the Government continues to disappoint people with disabilities, their families, and their caregivers through its ongoing delays in taking action.

It has been over a decade since the Government suspended the motorised transport grant and mobility allowance, with little being done to replace these much-needed supports”.