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Advocacy groups say nursing homes must be subject to human rights inspections

(2 March 2021) 

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has said the pandemic has shown that older people living in residential care are not getting the protection and care they need. And it’s clear that there are problems in other residential settings, such as Direct Provision, as well.

ICCL, Age Action and Sage Advocacy believe the solution to this is independent, human rights-focused inspections. The government is talking about such a system, but it’s essential that residential institutions and care homes are included. Ireland’s sad history in this regard shows us why this is so important.

Age Action's Response to the Benefits Payment for Over 65 Year Olds

(Monday 8 February 2021) Age Action, Ireland’s leading advocacy organisation for older people responds to the announcement by Minister Humphrey’s of the Benefit Payment for Over 65 Year Olds.

 Paddy Connolly, CEO Age Action said ‘A year to the day since people went to the polls, the Government has attempted and failed to address a key election issue with the design of the Benefit Payment for Over 65 Year Olds.

While it is welcome that people forced to retire at 65 because of mandatory retirement clauses don’t have to sign on the dole now to get a needed social welfare payment, they are still expected to make do with approximately €2300 per year less than the State pension. This piecemeal approach to pension reform continues to drive inequality experienced by older people in retirement. The correct response from Government would have been to address the issue of mandatory retirement clauses and deliver an adequate social safety net in retirement.’

 

ENDS

Age Action welcomes removal of pension age increase in Social Welfare Bill as part of the STOP67 Coalition

(9 December 2020) The STOP67 campaign has welcomed the removal of the pension age increase to 67 years on 1st January next in the Social Welfare Bill which will be debated in the Dáil today (9th December, 2020). 

The campaign, which helped to make the pension age increase a controversial and dominant issue during the general election in February 2020, includes the National Women’s Council (NWC), Age Action, Active Retirement Ireland and SIPTU. 

STOP67 calls for inclusion of advocates for women and older people on Pensions Commission

(13 November) The STOP67 Coalition has expressed its disappointment at the failure of the Government to appoint sufficient members to the Pensions Commission who reflect the interests of those most affected by the proposed pension age increase and, in particular, organisations representing women and older people. The Coalition includes the National Women’s Council (NWC), SIPTU, Age Action and Active Retirement Ireland.

In a letter to An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, the Coalition said it was “shocked and surprised” that the Commission does not include the representatives of so many of those directly affected by the proposed pension age increase. This followed the announcement by the Government of the members of the Commission, which is due to assess whether the pension age should be increased to 67 years and to set out a future plan for the pension system.

Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing? Positive Ageing Week 2020

As we learn to live with, and recover from, the impact of COVID-19, we have an opportunity to address inequalities experienced by older people, value their role in society, and ensure that the diversity of their voices is heard, informing decisions that affect them. Although events and activities will take place in limited numbers or virtually due to social gathering restrictions, we are hopeful that people of all ages across Ireland will take this opportunity to reflect on these themes within their families, communities, and workplaces. 

STOP67 campaign welcomes deferral of pension age increase

(Wednesday 16 June) The deferral of the pension age increase to 67 contained in the Programme for Government has been welcomed by the Stop67 campaign.

Ethel Buckley, Deputy General Secretary of SIPTU said: “During the recent general election there was widespread opposition to the proposed increase in the pension age.  Almost 80 per cent of voters supported parties which were committed to stopping the increase in the pension age to 67 next year.  The vindication of this democratic demand in the proposed Programme for Government is welcomed. It is only through genuine social dialogue and consensus that we can develop a socially beneficial and fiscally sustainable pension system.”

Age Action and Active Retirement Ireland Criticise Fianna Fáil & Fine Gael’s Framework for Coalition for Largely Ignoring Older People

(16 April) Active Retirement Ireland and Age Action have responded to a framework document published by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil with disappointment at the lack of commitments to older people and our ageing population. The document, which will inform coalition talks between the two political parties and potential coalition partners, was published yesterday and both NGOs have expressed concern that older people are being “largely ignored”.

 

Age Action and the Irish Red Cross launch COVID-19 Hardship Fund to Assist Older People

(Tuesday, 31 March 2020) Older people facing additional hardship as a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic can apply for financial support from Age Action and the Irish Red Cross.

 Age Action and the Irish Red Cross are launching a COVID-19 Hardship Fund in partnership to support people experiencing difficulties meeting costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.  Unexpected costs can put an added strain on older people and the Hardship Fund will assist with the costs of increased food bills and associated delivery costs, replacing or upgrading essential small appliances, additional transport, energy or communication costs and the costs of additional safety or security equipment to enable older people to remain safe and well in their homes.

 

Ageing Better campaign calls for Senior Minister for Older People and a joined-up approach to Ireland’s ageing population

Age Action and Active Retirement Ireland, the country’s leading older people’s organisations with a combined membership of approximately 30,000 people, held a photocall on Monday as part of their ‘Ageing Better’ general election campaign, calling for older people to be placed at the heart of the next government. 

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