Budget 2020 fails to adequately resource Independent Living for disabled people

Press Release from the Independent Living Movement Ireland 

Immediate Release, Oct. 8th 2019 

Commitment to the inclusion of people with disabilities sadly lacking in budget 2020 says the  Independent Living Movement Ireland

The 2020 Budget has failed to bring a comprehensive, coherent approach to resourcing the real inclusion of disabled people in Ireland says the Independent Living Movement Ireland (ILMI). 

Responding to measures in Budget 2020, ILMI chair Michelle Gaynor said “It is disappointing to read through the Budget 2020 and not find a specific reference to disabled people and independent living. Whilst an increase in home help supports is welcome, home help is not about empowering disabled people to live the lives of their choosing outside of their homes, about going to work, socialising, being part of the community. Budget 2020 reinforces the need for the Personal Assistance Service to be legislated for as a separate support in line Ireland’s commitments under the UNCRPD, specifically Article 19 and the right to live in the community”. 

“Once again we have a budget that ignores the demands of disabled people to have supports put in place to allow us to participate in society as equals. The Personal Assistance Service, when resourced, allows disabled people to live active lives of their choosing. By focusing on home help hours over personal assistance, this budget will condemn many disabled people to living as prisoners in their own homes, contrary to Ireland’s commitments under the UNCRPD”.

“The €1.1 billion commitment to deliver 11,000 new social homes in 2020 must include a commitment that at least 7.5% of all social housing units must be allocated to disabled people on local authority housing lists. We know from consulting with our members that the private rented market does not provide accessible accommodation for disabled people” added Ms Gaynor. 

 ILMI is also concerned about the increased carbon taxes which will place an unfair burden on many disabled people who will require to heat their homes more. 

“We all recognise the need to reduce our carbon emissions, but there are fairer and more sustainable mechanisms to do so. We need to invest in sustainable, accessible public transport which would do more for our carbon emissions whilst at the same time promoting a more inclusive society. It is sad that the Government has chosen to introduce a tax increase rather invest in an accessible public transport system which would benefit the environment and promote a fairer inclusive society for disabled people” says the Damien Walshe, CEO for Independent Living Movement Ireland.

Information for Editors:
Independent Living Movement Ireland, was established in 1992 by and for people with disabilities with the main aim of ensuring that people with disabilities achieved Independent Living, choice and control over their lives and full participation in society as equal citizens.

We are a campaigning, national representative organisation that promotes the philosophy of independent living and to build an inclusive society. Central to the way we work is to ensure that policy decisions that impact on the lives of disabled people have to be directly influenced by those whose lives are directly affected.

Our philosophy can be summed up as: ‘Nothing about us without us!’ and ‘Rights Not Charity’.

Our Vision
Our vision is an Ireland where disabled persons have freedom, choice and control over all aspects of their lives and can fully participate in an inclusive society as equals

We are working collectively to create an independent living Movement in Ireland which is led by disabled people and promotes a rights-based social model of disability, challenging the unacceptable charity / medical model of disability. We are working towards the removal of societal barriers that prevent active equal participation of disabled people, challenging the denial of people’s rights and the promotion of the philosophy of independent living.

Core Values
Our core values are underpinned by the philosophy of Independent Living and all activities are aimed towards promoting:

  • Independence
  • Options
  • Rights
  • Empowerment

Our Principles

  • We promote the active participation of leaders in all aspects of the work of ILMI: locally, regionally, nationally and internationally.
  • We are a DPO (disabled persons organisation) formed to ensure that the voice of disabled people will be heard in campaigns, research and policy development.
  • We recognise and promote equality within our members, in terms of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, age, marital status, socio-economic status and impairment.
  • We will actively promote an understanding of disability as an interaction between a person’s impairment and the societal and environmental barriers that disable people’s participation in society – and actively lobby to remove these barriers to participation and challenge the unacceptable medical / charity model of disability.
  • We are committed that ILMI continue to develop new innovative models to achieve equality of outcome, recognising that people have a variety of abilities, needs and wants.

Independent Living Movement Ireland recognises that language is a very powerful and evocative tool. Therefore, the language and terminology used in this press release has been carefully chosen to reflect the values of equality and empowerment which at the core of this organisation. The term ‘disabled people’ has been used throughout the press release in accordance with the UPIAS classification of disability and impairment which has been developed by disabled people themselves (UPIAS 1976). Where disabled people are referred to in the website this should be understood to include all disabled people, including those with learning difficulties, mental health difficulties and sensory impairments.


For more information, contact CEO Damien Walshe on 087 2858485 or email damienwalshe@ilmi.ie