BONDHLDERS, once again, have been prioritised over elderly citizens as more swingeing cuts are imposed on home-help hours. That is the view of Sinn Féin County Councillor, Rose Conway-Walsh who has called on the people of Mayo to join a march to Leinster House on Wednesday, October 17, in a bid to force the government to restore home-help hours and stop further cuts to the health services.
Cllr Conway-Walsh said yesterday that the ‘accumulative impact of these cuts over the past four years has caused elderly people to die prematurely’.
“Home help is an essential service and cutting another 400,000 hours to provide a saving of €8m is putting many elderly people in grave danger. I am appalled that Fine Gael TDs in this county, and Colm Keavney of Labour who supported our Campaign on Protecting Home Help Cuts, did a complete U-turn on the issue of home-help once they got elected. As far back as October 2010 Fianna Fáil had cut 32,000 home help hours for the elderly and disabled in Mayo. Fine Gael and Labour have continued Fianna Fail’s path to destruction on home-help and frontline health services. People from Mayo and rural Ireland cannot take any more broken promises,” the Belmullet based councillor said.
“Home Help cuts are intensified by the 12 month delays in Carers Allowance, closure of hospital beds, and cuts to other basic health services that effect the most vulnerable in our communities,” Cllr Conway-Walsh added.
The Dublin march is organised by The Home Help/Home Care Action Group, which has already implemented a campaign demanding that Minister for Health, James Reilly, the government and the HSE ‘immediately cease attacking the elderly, sick and disables and restore all home help hours and home care packages cut this year’.
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