Independent living and equal rights are only theories the #HSE put forward in an ideal world. In reality Independent living is a daily fight and unattainableto so many. I witness people becoming afraid to ask for what they want as the focus shifts to what people need at a basic level only. There’s no money, we are constantly told from budget meetings. We need to prioritise services, get people out of bed. Nothing we can do about it, we are told. Things are tight at the moment.
Despite being assessed for needing 46.5 hours of help a week, I receive 34hours?!?!
There are people out there who are incarcerated by circumstances out of their control. Many are living in hospitals either because their own houses are not wheelchair accessible, or because there are not enough ‘community supports’ like home helps and Personal Assistants, and it annoys me. It bothers me to hear about disabled people who are ready and willing to contribute to our economy being stuck at home because only their personal care needs are being met. It infuriates me sometimes that I was naively led to believe that disabled people could ever be viewed as equal when the story on the ground, as well as the lived reality, seems to be disturbingly different.
There are young people with my level of disability living in nursing homes. There are young people living in the community who receive as little as 42 minutes a day of home help or personal assistance.
We need to stop and think about that. We need to be aware. Awareness is the first step of change . Being part of an RTE series around surviving a life altering trauma and coming out the other side of it has been an incredibly positive experience for me. It has highlighted the importance of raising awareness. It has shown me that real change can and does come from sharing experiences. An honest, open, thought-provoking and often challenging tale of ability.
#ÁiseannaTacaíochta #Cheshireireland #HSEIreland #GE202
There needs to be greater visibility of disabled people in the media in order for wider society to understand the inequalities that exist.Sometimes finding solutions to inequalities requires large-scale change – government policy and legislation. But sometimes solutions lie in the smaller things. In the everyday things.