On Tuesday 16th October, the campaign group, Justice for Polio Survivors, held a Public Forum in Buswells Hotel, to discuss: why is the Polio Fellowship of Ireland and the Rehab Group reneging on their responsibilities to polio survivors?
The campaign group invited media, TDs, Senators and a number of Ministers to this forum, which was also attended by a number of polio survivors.
The Irish Times covered the issue in the following day’s paper, click here to read the article.
Frustrated by the Rehab spokesperson’s misrepresentation of their case, led Susan Dowling to write to the Irish Times and her response refuting Rehab’s comments, was printed in the paper’s letters page on Friday 19th October. You can read this by clicking here.
The campaign group indicate that they remain grateful to it’s supporters and to the media who covered the event.
They stated on their Facebook page:
‘it should be clarified that Polio Survivors Ireland is not looking for grant aid, in fact this campaign is about the duty of the Polio Fellowship of Ireland to polio survivors, who raised money and now receive no support from Rehab/Polio Fellowship of Ireland. These charities merged in 1986 and polio survivors were assured that their needs would be protected. This is not the case. All we are asking is that Rehab honour its obligations to people disabled by Polio.
As one polio survivor stated on reading the article:
“Would someone like to inform Rehab it is not a grant, it is our right, the money we collected in all weathers was for the Polio Fellowship.”‘
A number of TDs and Senators attended the event as follows:
- Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan, TD
- Brittany Amadaor on behalf of Deputy John Brassil, TD
- Deputy Margaret Murphy O’Mahony, TD
- Deputy Fergus O’Dowd, TD
- Deputy Eamon Scanlan, TD
- Eoin Ryan, advisor to Louise O’Reilly TD
- Deputy Frank O’Rourke, TD
- Senator Ivana Bacik (pictured below with Susan Dowling, Anne Shanahan and Joan Bradley)
- Senator John Dolan
Below are photos from the Public Forum, courtesy of Mark Harrison.