Delays in processing Domiciliary Care Allowance applications unacceptable – McDonald

Dublin Central TD Mary Lou McDonald has described the current delays in processing Domiciliary Care Allowance (DCA) applications as totally unacceptable and called on the Minister for Social Protection to put in place the necessary personnel to tackle the delays.

The Sinn Féin TD:

“Distressed parents have contacted me regarding the current delays in processing Domiciliary Care Allowance applications. In response to a Parliamentary Question I raised with the Minister for Social Protection Junior Minister of State Finian McGrath TD has confirmed that the department is not meeting its own targets for processing applications. This is totally unacceptable.

“Clearly additional resources are required and whilst the Junior Minister states additional deciding officers have been appointed he does not set out how many additional officers are in place or the date by which he expects application processing targets to be back on track. This will be cold comfort for those parents already struggling to make ends meet.

“It’s also really disappointing to learn from the Junior Minister that even if the department were meeting its own targets 30% of those applying for DCA would be waiting over 15 weeks for their applications to be processed. We can only assume their situation is even worse with the current delays in the system. Sinn Féin’s 2017 Budget proposals included a €15m provision for urgent posts in the public sector. We included this provision to ensure service delivery in critical areas could be supported by increasing personnel where needed.” CRIOCH