Senator John Dolan has extended an invitation to all recently elected Lord Mayors, Mayors and Cathaoirligh of all Local Authorities to a briefing in Leinster House on a range of disability issues - for today Wednesday 26th September. The event is also designed to mark the recent election of Lord Mayors, Mayors and Cathaoirligh and the recent Ratification by Ireland of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD).
In stressing the importance of this event, Senator John Dolan said today, “I invited all newly appointed Mayors and Cathaoirligh for a similar briefing here at the Oireachtas last year, as I felt there was substantial mutual benefit around the issue of disability, especially as it affects people in their reasonable desire to live normal and inclusive lives in their communities. As a follow on to the positive feedback from last year – I have decided to hold a similar event today”.
Dolan continued, “I see the Mayors and Cathaoirligh as key representatives of the local authorities and leaders on so many vital issues. People with disabilities and mental health needs are a minority of the population yet they most need active support in order to lead full lives”.
“I will take this opportunity to highlight the unique nature of Local Authorities in responding to disability issues. They are unique in two ways, firstly, they are directly elected by local people and secondly, they represent and support the place where people live their lives. Apart from the range of direct responsibilities, which each local authority provides, it is also a fact that all other public services must be delivered in local areas; from education, policing, transport, income supports, health etc”.
Dolan also said, “All of us are well aware that each council area has a key role and a responsibility in providing support for people with disabilities and their families. I will be asking them to imagine each county and city as one that is known for its accessibility and welcome to people with disabilities and their families. That would bring vibrancy both social and economic -
and most of all it is the right thing to do”.
“I look forward to a constructive and informing two way conversation on the 26th – one which can ultimately make a difference to the lives of the 643,000 people who experience some level of disability in this country”
The guest speaker at the event today was Assistant Commissioner Dave Sheahan, Head of Roads Policing, An Garda Síochána.