Parents of children with disabilities require urgent financial assistance, the Federal National Council (FNC) heard on Tuesday.
Hamad Al Rahoomi, a FNC member from Ras Al Khaimah, raised a question about the limit on financial support to parents of disabled children to Hessa bint Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development, during a discussion chaired by FNC Speaker Dr Amal Al Qubaisi.
The RAK Member asked for reasons why the ministry is taking into consideration the salary of the father while giving away the financial aid for parents of disabled children. Al Rahoomi added that if the father’s salary is above Dh20,000 a month, the family are not eligible for support.
“I know one case of a father who has a salary of Dh30,000 a month, but has a severely disabled nine-year-old boy who requires urgent and daily care. The child requires extremely expensive equipment and breathing machines, and this father is suffering because he needs to take care of his other children as well.”
He pointed out that the young boy even requires expensive diapers, oxygen masks and is living completely on machines: “The boy is completely paralysed.”
He alleged: “This rule or procedure of whether parents are eligible for financial support based on the father’s salary was created by the ministry and not a law based in the UAE.”
However, the minister clarified that the procedure does consider severe cases and is open to help parents, whether or not the father’s salary is above Dh20,000.
“We do take into consideration such severe cases, but these cases should be directly delivered to me.”
She noted that the ministry has supported 561 cases in 2017 for children under 18: “Regardless of the father’s income.”
Al Rahoomi thus called for a recommendation that the ministry remove the current procedure.