Marian Harkin MEP pictured with Valerie Moran, Manager of Longford Centre for Independent Living Ltd, after a roundtable discussion on the Implementation on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the role of the EU’s External Action.Independent MEP Marian Harkin has called on the Irish government to “enshrine in law this country’s commitment to its citizens with disabilities, by ratifying the UN Convention, but also by ensuring adequate funding remains in place for the vital services providing a decent quality of life and independence”.Having hosted an International Roundtable in Brussels analysing global ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities, Harkin called on Ireland to “follow the example set by a clear majority of EU countries and ratify as soon as possible. Indeed it would seem appropriate that this happen during the current Irish EU Presidency”.Equally vital, according to the Ireland North & West MEP, is the need to maintain adequate levels of funding for those service providers which ensure a high quality of independent living for Irish citizens with disabilities. “The UN Convention pushes for people with disabilities to have every necessary support to be fully involved and included in society,” said Ms Harkin.“In Ireland, we have in the past put many good measures in place which serve this purpose, yet there is now a clear and present danger of cutbacks to these vital services. It would seem a damning contradiction to ratify the UN Convention while simultaneously undercutting the services which best uphold that document’s ideals,” she added.“I have consulted numerous Irish experts, including Valerie Moran of the Longford Centre for Independent Living, and there is huge uncertainty for service providers at present, with the axe most likely to fall on the number of hours they can provide to assist people with disabilities.“Independent living – the simple ability to have dignity in one’s own home, and the freedom to leave it and be a full member of one’s community must not be allowed to be viewed as a luxury, even in this austerity era: it must be viewed as a right.” The Independent MEP added: “I am therefore urging the government to do the right thing on both macro and micro levels: we must ratify the UN convention while funding services to give all Irish citizens with disabilities the means to lead independent, dignified lives.” GOVERNMENT HASN’T ENSHRINED RIGHTS OF DISABLED INTO LAW, SAYS HARKIN was last modified: February 26th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:GOVERNMENT HASN’T ENSHRINED RIGHTS OF DISABLED INTO LAWSAYS HARKIN
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