Access to Life: Personal Assistant Service in Ireland and Independent Living by People with Physical and Sensory Disabilities

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DFI Research Launch

Date: Thursday, 6th February 2014, Time: 2 – 4pm, Venue: Atrium Building, Trinity College, Dublin 2.           

DFI has the pleasure of inviting you to the launch of the Disability Federation of Ireland’s (DFI) most recent research report, Access to Life: Personal Assistant Service in Ireland and Independent Living by People with Physical and Sensory Disabilities, which will be launched by Kathleen Lynch T.D., Minister for State for Disability, Older People, Equality & Mental Health.

The report aims to promote a better understanding about Ireland’s Personal Assistant (PA) service.  The research involved 30 one-to-one interviews with people using a PA service, as well as interviews with a range of stakeholders.

Although the PA service has great potential to facilitate mainstreaming and “full inclusion and self-determination for people”1, which is the Government’s stated objective for disability services, the service has received little evaluation and for example was not included as part of the Department of Health’s’ (2012)  Value for Money and Policy Review of Disability Services in Ireland.

The findings reveal the views of thirty people using PA services who have embraced the notion of independent living.  The research indicates that the ethos of the services as a method of enabling independent living is being eroded.

Recommendations are proposed to support a shared understanding and vision for the PA service going forward. It is hoped that the publication of this research will stimulate and contribute to a more informed and robust debate on the nature and direction of PA services into the future.

Elected members of the Oireachtas have been invited and we will be inviting the media to attend.

Places are limited - please confirm your attendance by the deadline of Friday, 31st January in reply mail to events@disability-federation.ie or by phone to Cathy on 086 3847440, noting any particular requirements you may have on the day to us.

         

 

[1] Excerpt from the first policy goal stated in Department of Health (2013)  Value for Money and Policy Review of Disability Services in Ireland: Implementation Framework;  5

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