In February 2021, DEBRA Ireland joined the #Vaccine for Carers campaign. This campaign was fronted by our Parent Ambassador Liz Collins.
Since then there has been numerous statements recognising family carers as the backbone of community supports and services in Ireland. However there is yet to be a commitment to prioritise the vaccination of carers as has been replicated in other countries. Just yesterday (31st March), the Dáil debated the motion to care for carers (Link to the motion). There was cross party commitment to this motion, which is a very welcome update. However given the Government’s and NIAC’s decision on 30th March to roll out an age based vaccine programme (https://www.rte.ie/news/coronavirus/2021/0330/1207045-coronavirus-vaccination-list/), family carers have been given hope in one hand whilst it’s been taken away swiftly with the other. Their main question is who will care for my loved one if I get COVID as what happened Liz Collins last year. Read about how worrying this time was for her and her family here- https://www.independent.ie/breaking-news/irish-news/mum-and-carer-of-teenager-with-rare-skin-condition-issues-plea-over-vaccine-40103019.html
DEBRA continues to advocate for family carers to not just be spoken about as a key member of society but to be treated as such.