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ILMI eBulletin 10th May 2019

Welcome to the 38th ILMI eBulletin.
 Please folks if you like our eBulletin give us a reaction and share share share. All the best from the ILMI team.

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Updates from ILMI

Call for Action: Mobilise and lobby your TD & Senator to hear about The #PASNOW Campaign

On Wednesday 29th May, we are launching “Achieving a Right to Personal Assistance in Ireland” which is a collaboration between the Centre for Disability Law and Policy at NUI Galway and Independent Living Movement Ireland (ILMI). The paper will be launched by Minister Finian McGrath in the Oireachtas and a discussion will be chaired by Senator Colette Kelleher, with inputs from ILMI about independent living and what the PAS means.
The report explores the options for recognising the right to personal assistance in Irish law and our launch is an opportunity for ILMI to bring the issue of a right to a personal assistance service directly to TDs and senators.

We need TDs and Senators to be our allies and build up support to introduce legislation to make a Personal Assistance Service a right for disabled people.
We need ILMI members to contact their local TDs and Senators to attend this launch. We need you to let them know that as constituents, as voters, that you want your elected representatives to be there in the AV room on the 29th May at 11:30am to be part of a rights-based discussion on the PAS.

ILMI will contact all TDs and Senators but the real strength in lobbying TDs and Senators will come from a local voice. These are your elected representatives. Tell them this is important to you. You need them to attend so that they can learn about Independent Living and why a right to a Personal Assistance Service is something that matters to you, your friends, your family. HAVE YOUR VOICE HEARD!

ILMI would like to thank Bearnairdín Nic Aogáin, Rory Knight, Mary Melvin, Teopista Nannyanzi, Clíona de Bhailís and Professor Eilionóir Flynn for all their work in developing this report and once it is formally launched we will upload the report onto our website.

If you need contact details of  your TD or Seantor email Nina on


Declaration of Independence
“Imagine if one voice could change the world. Not your voice, not my voice, but OUR voice”.

ILMI’s “Declaration of Independence” video campaign to increase awareness of disability rights was launched on European Independent Living Day 5th of May 2019 #ILDay19. Click Here to see the video.

 Galway Activism Group members

Have Your Voice Heard
On the 1st of May Galway City and County local election candidates were invited to the Connacht Hotel to meet with disabled people and discuss issues relating to disability equality. The meeting was called by the newly formed Galway Activism Group, which works to provide an independent voice for disabled people in Galway.
Chairperson for the evening James Casey highlighted how the meeting was to be viewed as a starting point for Galway City and County Councillors, with ongoing consultation with people who have the lived experience vital in the future. Discussion for the evening focused on the foundations for inclusion of all disabled people – housing, employment, universal access and transport with Galway City East Social Democrats Candidate Owen Hanley emphasising the need for ‘disability to be seen as a rights issue – not just an issue of finding extra money to fix ongoing problems’. Many candidates echoed those sentiments and called for disabled people to ensure the voice of the lived experience is brought to the forefront in Galway. With over eighty people in the room Pauline O’Reilly Green Party Candidate for Galway City West spoke of the powerful impact of the evening and urged her fellow candidates to continue to work with Galway Activism post-election day on May 24th.
A very positive evening was brought to a close by Galway Activism urging everyone present to use their vote to change the lives of people living with disabilities in Galway “Things can change but only if we change them. The most important part is that we have to change them together as Galway residents”.

Bringing Disability Equality to the Local Elections

ILMI are delighted to support two of our members who are contesting the Local Elections on May 24th. Disabled people are direly represented in the political arena and it is refreshing to see both candidates bring their wealth of knowledge and experience to the table. They are both Independent Candidates without the support of parties behind them so are working extremely hard to get their message out to the electorate. We wish them both the very best of luck on polling day and remember to use your all-important vote. Change can happen but only if we make it happen together!


Photo of Dermot Hayes

Dermot Hayes, Independent Candidate, Ennis Municipal District

Dermot Hayes has vast experience in the community sector. This is Dermot’s third attempt at contesting elections and he hopes that this time people will recognise the importance of having the voice of lived experience at the decision making table. A co-founder of the Disabled People of Clare and the Clare Leader Forum Dermot already does a huge amount of work in Ennis for disabled people. However his work also expands to include other marginalised groups and he is active on a number of different community groups in the area. Married to Marian for over 22 years and with two adult children Dermot brings many different aspects to this campaign. His work was recognised recently as he was voted runner-up Volunteer of the Year at the Clare Community Awards and we hope that this recognition is echoed on polling day in Clare. We wish you the very best of luck comrade!

Marian Maloney pictured with her guide dog Leon

Marian Maloney, Independent Candidate, Galway City West

Marian Maloney is a late entrant to the political race in Galway. A member of the Galway Activism Group Marian was inspired to declare for Galway City West in the upcoming elections after only one candidate from her municipal district attended the event have Your Voice Heard on May 1st.  Marian already has a wealth of experience in community development and tirelessly gives of her time, on a voluntary basis, to ensure the voice of lived experience is represented through the Galway City Community Network. She was one of the first individuals elected to the Social Inclusion college when the Public Participation Network was first developed in Galway and has continued her work through both GCCN and Access for All. She is also a busy mother and grandmother, an active part of the Galway Visually Impaired Activity Club, and now also a founding member of Galway Activism. She is a well-known face around Galway with her guide dog Leon and we hope that people acknowledge the many years she has already given to improving the lives of Galway citizens and how she can continue to do so well into the future. Best of luck Marian!


Group photo of Community Platform members

Community Platform #MyValuesMyVote launch

On Thursday 2nd May, ILMI participated in the Community Platform #MyValuesMyVote launch. As an active member of the platform, we developed a Values based manifestos to try and encourage people to elect candidates at Local and European elections who  value Community, Decency and Participation. These values are:


  • Promoting a sense of belonging and inclusion
  • Welcoming and nurturing people
  • Helping communities to flourish now and in the future
  • Valuing human dignity above other interests
  • Promoting a decent quality of life for all
  • Ensuring a healthy and enjoyable environment
  • Listening to and encouraging expression
  • Bringing people in from the margins
  • Supporting people to engage with decision makers

Community Platform have developed a series of leaflets for the public  for local elections  and European elections
There is more information on the #MyValuesMyVote on the Platform Website


‘No offence, but if I was in a wheelchair I don’t think I’d get up in the morning’
ILMI Member Aisling Glynn writes in the Irish Times click here for the full powerful piece.



Living Independently and being included in the Community: ANED Report
The Academic Network of European Disability Experts (ANED) has done an Independent living review across European countries. Ireland’s report “Living independently and being included in the community” was written by Dr Catriona Moloney (Centre for Disability Law and Policy NUIG)

The report can be accessed Here and looks at Ireland’s commitment at a Statutory level to Independent Living.

The report states that the move towards integrated community living arrangements and individualised supports for disabled people in Ireland is gathering momentum, with a  number of commitments to a new model of disability service provision underpinned by values of person-centeredness, inclusion, community organisation, participation, independence and choice that provides flexible support services for persons with disabilities to lead full and independent lives and to participate in work and society.

However, it notes that several strategies, specifically  the Time to Move On Strategy, have progressed slowly which can be directly linked to delays in funding thus preventing implementation in line with its targets. The report notes that in the absence of a national personal assistance scheme the right to independent living in line with article 19 of the UNCRPD will not be fully realised in Ireland.


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