Coalition urged not to end disability pay for under-18s
OPPOSITION POLITICIANS have called on Government not to end disability allowance payments to under-18s in the budget after Taoiseach Enda Kenny said an expert group’s recommendations would be considered by the Coalition.
The advisory group on tax and social welfare reporting to Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton shortly will recommend a less valuable domiciliary care allowance be paid to the parents or guardians of 16- and 17-year-olds.
Mr Kenny told the Dáil the matter would be considered by Government “collectively” as part of its responsibility to bring forward a “challenging” budget for 2013.
“The matter of disability payments to under-18-year-olds is the subject of a report that has not been concluded, that has not been presented to the Minister, that has not been seen by any Minister and therefore has not been considered by the Government,” he said.
“Obviously, it will be considered as part of the overall responsibility of the Government to present its budget early in December.”
Sinn Féin spokesman on social protection Aengus Ó Snodaigh said the current payment was vital to promote the social inclusion of young people with disabilities.
“The impact of the reported recommendation to raise the age of disability allowance from 16 to 18 is that the households of a young person with a disability could be down €6,062 a year. This is because the domiciliary care allowance payment is significantly lower than disability allowance,” he said.