Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Questions (86)

Gerry Adams

Question:

86. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the status of progress made in putting a new disability inclusion strategy in place; the objectives which have been identified; the consultations which have taken place to date; and when she will provide a report on same. [27035/16]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

The new National Disability Inclusion Strategy will replace the previous Disability Strategy Implementation Plan, and will take a whole-of-Government approach to disability issues, including setting out high-level objectives and detailed actions in the areas of education, employment, provision of public services, health, income support, and personal safety and autonomy. The third phase in the consultation process that is taking place with a view to developing the Strategy was launched in July 2016.

Phase 2 of the consultation process, which concluded in December 2015, included a round of regional consultation meetings that focused on identifying high level objectives under each of the strategic themes agreed in Phase 1. These meetings took place in Cork, Tullamore and Dublin. There was also an opportunity to comment on the Consultation Document online, or to email/post submissions to the Department of Justice and Equality. A dedicated focus group for people with intellectual disabilities also took place.

The themes and associated high-level objectives that emerged from Phase 1 and 2 of the process are set out in the Consultation Document for Phase 3 that is available on the website of the Department of Justice and Equality. Phase 3 of the process, which has now commenced, will focus on identifying precise and measurable actions and timescales for achievement of each of the above named objectives. The Department of Justice and Equality is again seeking the input of stakeholders – disability organisations and service providers, individuals with a lived experience of disability, Government departments and agencies – into the process of agreeing these actions and timescales. The consultations in this Phase will take place on the following dates:

- 13th October – Cork

- 17th October – Dublin

- 25th October – Tullamore

Submissions can also be e-mailed/posted to the Department of Justice and Equality. A specialised focus group for stakeholders with intellectual disabilities will also take place. Following phase 3, a revised draft of the new Strategy will be prepared with the assistance of the National Disability Strategy Steering Group for consideration by Government. I intend that the new Strategy will be in place by end 2016.