AROUND 5,000 PEOPLE with disabilities, their families and supporters today marched from the Central Bank to Leinster House to demand greater and equal rights for people with disabilities ahead of the upcoming Budget.
Organisers of the march, coordinated by the Disability Rights Coalition (DRC), say they were “delighted with the turnout” with people “from all over the country” protesting to make their voices heard.
Siobhán Kane of Inclusion Ireland, one of the organisations that makes up the DRC, told TheJournal.ie:
The message got sent to government today that people with disabilities have had enough and they want to be listened to. The government must start making them a priority and stick to their promises.
A protester showing a red card to the Irish government today. Image: DisabilityIre/Twitter
The protesters showed the government a red card today and called on them to fulfil disability related promises made in the 2011 Programme for Government. Among the promises made were maintaining social welfare rates, introducing independent inspection of disability services and the introduction of modern decision making laws to replace the 1871 Lunacy Act.
Although 13 per cent of the population have a disability, they “continue to be ignored, isolated and bear an unfair brunt of economic cutbacks”, say campaigners.