Dickson welcomes Post-19 Lobby Group to Stormont

Alliance MLA for East Antrim, Stewart Dickson, welcomed over 100 guests to the launch of a research report entitled The Impact of Transition on Family Life in the Long Gallery, Parliament Buildings, on October 9, 2012.

The launch is the culmination of nine months of research carried out by the Post-19 Lobby Group and provides a snapshot of family life with a severely disabled child or young person.

The guests consisted of parents and carers from across Northern Ireland, as well as organisations and individuals interested in disability advocacy.

Stewart Dickson MLA said that the post-19 transition process is effectively a lottery and a cause of deep distress for families of children with special needs.

He said: “The process of transition to adult services is meant to start at the age of 14, but little is done by the age of 19 and families are left having to pay out of their pocket for things that should be paid for directly.

“Parents shared stories of independent living packages not materialising due to a number of factors, including too much red tape.

“The two main problems are finding post-19 activities, which are very few, and getting money to fund a placement if one is available.

“The findings of the research report will focus our attention on the areas that we can work on to improve the lives and experiences of those with severe learning disabilities and their families.

“I have offered my support to the Post-19 Lobby Group and look forward to helping them take their campaign forward.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *