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MICHAEL ODOWD: Disability Employment Goals Should Be Linked to Financial Support

Aontú Rep for Louth, Michael O’Dowd, has called on the Government to link financial support for the Public and Civil Service to their achievement in reaching disability employment goals.

The suggestion was made in a submission by Aontú to the government on the UN Draft Initial Report under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Aontú’s Michael O’Dowd stated that the carrot approach of expecting organisations to reach employment goals for people with a disability has clearly failed. Some public bodies have met their statutory responsibilities but for those who do not there must be some financial
penalty. If we are to reach a target of 6% by 2024 then words and sentiments must translate to action and commitment. Also, we need to see people with disabilities employed at every level in the public sector.

Simply setting targets for employment of persons with disabilities is not enough. If there is no incentive to meet these targets or cost to ignoring these targets, the targets will never be met. These targets will be considerations at best, whereas disability employment targets need to be requirements. What better way than to link these targets to financial supports? It is a simple, beneficial measure which will compel action, and punish inaction.

Among the other suggestions Aontú made were:

By Aontú Press | 14 May, 2021

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Throughout Ireland, many people are now afraid to say what they feel, many are afraid to respectfully engage on a range of different topics. Many feel there is a new censorship and a new political correctness in Ireland, that opposition to the establishment is being deleted.

Respectful opposition is not the enemy. Respectful opposition is a critical element of a functional democracy. Aontú will have the backbone to stand up, without fear, for you.