Monday 14 October 2019

Sacrifice: Mother says carers being demeaned by Government

Support: Lisa Domican, with her son Liam, pictured at their home in Greystones. Photo: Damien Eagers
Support: Lisa Domican, with her son Liam, pictured at their home in Greystones. Photo: Damien Eagers

Mícheál Ó Scannáil

A MOTHER of two children with special needs says that the Government is taking carers for granted, as she feels demeaned and disappointed by Budget 2020.

Lisa Domican, who is the full-time carer for both of her children, had hoped that the Budget would reform how she is tested for her allowance. Presently, she is means-tested based on her husband's income, something she had hoped would change in the Budget.

The Government, she says, is ignoring carers like her because it knows they cannot go on strike.

"They know we can't withdraw our services. The people in these positions don't recognise the sacrifice it takes," she said. "They don't recognise us as an asset. A lot of people consider me a burden on the system and a scrounger and the fact that I have two adults with severe autism is my bad luck.

"I wanted medical cards for carers. If I want to go to the doctor, I have to use my husband's PRSI so I basically have to get his permission."

Lisa's son Liam (21) needs one-to-one support for almost all of the day. While Lisa says he is a "really lovely, clever young man", he has very high needs and challenging behaviour. Her daughter Grace (20) is non-verbal and uses a picture communication system.

Lisa drops both to adult education services in Dún Laoghaire and Milltown respectively every morning.

Lisa, who is in her 50s, repeats this every day, but her allowance is based on the income of her husband.

Irish Independent

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