Inclusion Ireland, the National Association for People with an Intellectual Disability, has welcomed the appointment of Áine Flynn to the position of Director of the Decision Support Service.
Sarah Lennon, Campaigns and Policy Lead, said, “We would like to congratulate Ms Flynn on her appointment, and wish the new appointee every success in leading this important body which will help to protect and promote the choices of individuals with issues around capacity.”
“Inclusion Ireland has long recognised the need for an independent statutory body to support decision-making for people whose capacity may be in question whilst providing oversight of individuals who are supporting persons with capacity difficulties.”
“It is essential that Ms Flynn hits the ground running and begins the much needed work of public awareness. The Act is almost two years old and many of the people that Inclusion Ireland represents are keen to make use of the decision-making structures. It is also essential that we do not make the mistakes that England and Wales made where their corresponding law is little known and underused.”
“Training of both service users and service providers, in tandem with colleges for the next generation of support workers, must begin so that we can start to change the culture surrounding people with disabilities, older people and those with acquired brain injury or mental illness. This law underpins the right of everyone to make their own decisions, with support if required and this is something we know is not happening today.”
“While the DSS was usefully placed within the MHC during its start-up phase, Inclusion Ireland has long advocated for it to be a standalone body with the resources and authority required to be effective. We strongly believe that the Decision Support Service should be independent and distinct from the MHC, however, Inclusion Ireland recognises that the MHC has the skills mix that the DSS will require. A distinct and standalone body must be established as soon as is feasible.”
Inclusion Ireland is the national association for people with an intellectual disability. The advocacy organisation provides a central forum for its members to identify priorities and formulate nationally agreed policies to present to government, statutory bodies, other relevant groups as well as the general public. Inclusion Ireland campaigns for changes in services and legislation that will improve the quality of life and participation of people with an intellectual disability in Irish society. The association also provides an information and advice service to people with an intellectual disability, their families, services that support people with an intellectual disability, students and researchers.
Nyle Lennon, Communications Officer, 01 855 9891