Cregg House services 'to continue'

 

Services for the intellectually disabled at Cregg House, Co Sligo, will continue, Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn told the Dáil today.

Mr Quinn, who was taking leaders' questions on the Government's behalf, said the Department of Health would issue a statement on the unit today.

He said a distinction needed to be made between the delivery of the service and who was delivering it.

The Daughters of Wisdom, who had been running the service, knew it would continue to be provided, he added. It would simply not be provided by them.

Mr Quinn was replying to Fianna Fáil's Charlie McConalogue and Sinn Féin's Aengus Ó Snodaigh.

Mr McConalogue said 214 families in the north-west faced a very distressing situation and were in shock when they heard the Daughters of Wisdom announce they would no longer be providing services in Cregg House.

The order, he said, had cared for intellectually disabled people for nearly 60 years.

"They believe that the HSE’s under-funding of the centre by €1.3 million makes it impossible for them to continue with the services they have provided so well until today," he added.

He said the staff had been informed of the decision late yesterday afternoon following confirmation talks with the HSE had broken down.

Mr McConalogue said the manner in which the order and families were being treated was a scandal.

Mr Ó Snodaigh said he was appalled that the service would not be continued because of Government cutbacks.

He said the service covered a wide area, including south Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim and parts of Cavan.