Sir, Congratulations to Jean Tubridy, PhD (December 17th) for highlighting (as a researcher) the importance for the Commission on the Status of People with disabilities of listening to what people with disabilities are saying. Her letter assumes, of course, that such people can communicate.

What of those who can't, persons with severe autism or profound mental handicap? Who will speak on their behalf?

It is to be hoped that the parents and advocates of such persons "without a voice" will speak loudly on their behalf to the Council for the Status of People with Disabilities. More importantly, it is to be hoped that interested persons such as Jean Tubridy will listen to what they have to say. Yours, etc., Ryevale Lawns, Leixlip, Co Kildare.