Labour demands more investment in mental health and disability care for children – Seán Sherlock TD

Seán Sherlock TD
14 August 2023
  • Government is failing to support children with mental health and disabilities.
  • Waiting lists for initial assessments are too long.
  • Government must listen to the Ombudsman for Children.


Deputy Seán Sherlock, Labour’s spokesperson on children, equality, and disability, has strongly criticised the Government for failing to provide adequate care for children in the area of mental health and disabilities.

“The Labour Party has for a long time demanded greater investment in mental health and disability supports for children, and we are deeply disappointed that the government has not taken our concerns seriously. Waiting lists for appointments are unacceptably long, and children are going without the care they need. Vulnerable children deserve better and deserve to have access to the care they need. This is a scandal.

“In June, Labour proposed a bill to put in place a coherent framework to address the unmet needs of people with autism and we call on the Government to implement this plan to help the most vulnerable children in society.

“Criticism from Ombudsman for Children, Dr. Niall Muldoon is alarming, and the Government must listen. We saw in recent correspondence Dr. Muldoon described the State’s failure as “profound violation of children’s rights”.

“Children with mental health and disabilities are being let down by the government,” said Seán Sherlock TD. “The Labour Party is calling on the Government to:

  1. Increase investment in mental health and disability services for children in Budget 2024
  2. Reduce waiting lists for appointments
  3. Make it easier for children to access the care they need

We cannot wait any longer for the government to take action. Children with mental health and disabilities deserve better, and they deserve to have access to the care they need and Labour will continue to push for change.”

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