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Lowry Criticises Governmental Inaction on Disability Allowance Backlogs

Deputy Michael Lowry has criticised the Government for ignoring the plight of those in difficulty by refusing to take action to tackle the backlog in the processing of arrears owed to successful disability allowance applicants.

The Independent T.D. for Tipperary stated that there is an increased incidence of people contacting his office who have been waiting in excess of 5 months for the arrears rightly due to them.

Deputy Lowry stated;

“Anecdotal evidence through my office has shown a marked and drastic increase in waiting times for arrears payable to disability allowance applicants. These are the arrears owed where a person has been deemed eligible for the payment and either may have been on a supplementary welfare payment, a lower rate of Social Welfare payment, and have an entitlement to the balance.  Others await arrears from the date they lodged their applications to the date their claim was sanctioned”


“In a Parliamentary Question I called on Minister Burton to tackle this issue and to immediately sanction additional staff to clear the backlog in question. It seems that Minister Burton has her head buried in the sand and is out of touch of the realities being faced by disability allowance applicants. In her reply she downplays the delays being faced, has refused to give clear information on the actual length of delays and has simply stated that additional resources were ‘recently’ allocated to this section.”

“The Minister is showing a complete disregard of the financial distress and hardship this is causing to families who are desperately awaiting the repayment of arrears. It is simply not good enough that these families and individuals are left in duress due to delays in the department and inaction from the Minister.”