Longford's St Christopher’s bosses demand meeting on €2m shortfall

Kevin Forde

Reporter:

Kevin Forde

Email:

kevin.forde@longfordleader.ie

St Christophers

St Christopher's Services in Longford town

Longford based and well renowned Disability Services, St Christopher's Services, has issued a demand for an urgent meeting with Minister for Health Simon Harris and Minister of State for Disability Finian McGrath to discuss the ongoing underfunding of services to the tune of €2 million euro.

Speaking following issuing the request for the meeting, Chief Executive Officer, Derek Scanlon urged the Ministers “to come to the table to discuss the shortfall in funding within our services”.

Mr Scanlon said, “Minister Harris visited our services in September 2017 and gave us a commitment to ensure that adequate funding would be provided for the long term security of services but to date only one portion of the underfunding has been provided for and there remains a further underfunding of €2 million annually plus an underlying debt of €1 million from previous year’s underfunding.”

Mr Scanlon added, “At present we can barely maintain the services we are providing and we are not providing the best service that we can to our service users and will struggle to continue to provide services into the future.

“As an example we have access to a psychologist for two days a month yet there is a need for two full time posts within our service alone.”

Mr Scanlon said the money overspent on the National Children's hospital would enable them to provide world class services to their patients for the next 500 years.

“This underfunding is systemic within Disability Services and needs to be addressed by the government and the HSE immediately.”