October 9, 2015
Applicants for Carer’s Allowance are waiting 35 weeks on average for a decision on their payment according to a Dáil reply given to Social Democrats T.D. Róisín Shortall.
The Dáil reply sets out the long average waiting time across a number of schemes including:
When waiting times for appeals are excluded, the waiting times for carers allowance is still 16.5 weeks, state pension non-contributory 14.5 weeks and disability allowance 9.7 weeks.
Róisín Shortall said, “It tells a lot about the political priorities of the Government that they are doling out free Water Conservation Grants, and all the administrative burden that is entailed with that, at a time when pensioners, Carers and people with disabilities are waiting for basic payments from the same Department. Most of these payments are means-tested meaning the applicants have little or no other income. They simply can’t afford to wait months for these decisions.While the Department of Social Protection is leaving these people in limbo, they are pulling out all the stops to dole out a free non-means tested payment under the guise of water conservation. Phone-lines were manned until late at night, deadlines have been extended, a media campaign was engaged in.
Is there any better evidence that the Government is now governing in its own interest rather than the people they were elected to serve?