Equality for People with Disabilities
Labour Party Manifesto 2020

Labour is committed to giving everyone a fair start in life and the help they need to overcome disability to flourish as human beings and to reach their potential. Labour is committed to creating a single health system that works for everyone, so that everyone gets equally good medical treatment, based on medical need or disability, not by how much they can afford.

Labour will redirect funding to local primary care centres, which will bring health services closer to communities including medical tests, early intervention/prevention of illness, disability supports, eldercare and mental health services. They will also help people to manage long-term disease like diabetes. Staffing will include nurses, home help workers, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and counsellors. Improving services at local primary care level will reduce overcrowding and waiting times. Primary care is internationally proven to lead to more efficient treatment, is more cost- effective and reduces healthcare inequalities.

Labour will increase funding for home help and respite care, so that more people can be cared for in their homes. Labour will alsoincrease the number of step-down beds, which allow people to make the transition from acute hospital settings back to their own home.

Labour will extend free-of-charge GP care to all under-18s, and to everyone with a long- term illness or disability. We will train more GPs and invest in practices, so your community has access to a doctor. Labour will expand the role of advanced nurse practitioners, physician associates and community pharmacists to help fill the gap while additional GPs are being sourced. Labour will ensure that no one with a serious disability or long-term illness is without at least a GP Visit Card if not a Medical Card.

Labour will target electric vehicle grants to those who need them..People with a disability who are also car dependent will be given an electric vehicle grant.

Labour will redirect resources towards early intervention with young children who have a disability and special needs, including neurodiversity, to reduce waiting times and to improve outcomes. This has been shown internationally to be more cost effective, as well as much better for children and their families.

Labour will provide a home care package to every identified case, and we will increase funding for dementia supports, with a minimum standard of community services for people affected by dementia in each county. Labour will improve pay and conditions for those working in home help.

Labour will develop an elder care strategy, building on existing knowledge in gerontology. This will include making available new technology medical devices and remote access to medical consultation for people living in isolated areas.

Labour will further develop individualised budgeting for care services to give recipients more autonomy and choice, and we will increase funding for personal assistance services (including in educational settings) and housing adaptation grants. Labour’s vision is to build an Ireland where people with disabilities are empowered to live independent lives with control, choice and options.

Labour will increase investment in services that help prevent blindness or loss of hearing.

Labour will improve services for people with neurodiversity, including breaking down barriers to social inclusion and employment, as well as providing healthcare services.

Labour will require local councils to achieve evidence-based targets for specialised forms of housing, including accessible social housing for people with a disability