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Age Action responds to Fair Deal rental proposal

Published 15/08/2017

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Age Action, Ireland’s leading advocacy organisation for older people, has given a cautious welcome to reports that the Fair Deal scheme could be amended to encourage nursing home residents to rent out their homes.

Justin Moran, Head of Advocacy and Communications with Age Action, said: “We’re going to have to see the detail of the proposal from Minister Murphy but we would certainly welcome any change to Fair Deal that encouraged nursing home residents to rent out their homes by allowing them to retain the rental income.

“Currently, under Fair Deal, a nursing home resident must hand over 80 per cent of any income and we know this puts many off entering the rental market. A change like this would help them to pay the extra charges imposed by many nursing homes while also helping families struggling to find homes to rent."

Warning

But Age Action also warned that it was essential any change to the Fair Deal scheme needed to be about supporting older people who wished to rent out their homes and that attempts to put them under pressure would be unacceptable.

Justin Moran continued: “It’s important that any change must be an incentive that protects the choice of a nursing home resident to rent out their home.

"We would be worried if nursing home residents, already paying levies on their income, assets and family home, would also be targeted by any vacant property tax as they would simply be unable to afford it.”

Age Action will be writing to Minister Eoghan Murphy to seek clarity on the proposed changes.

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A Fair Society for All? Listening to the Voices of Older People

Often, inequalities experienced by older people reflect an accumulated disadvantage which can be as a result of factors such as socio-economic status, health, gender, location. How existing inequalities impact on us as we age is something we in Age Action explored through a panel discussion 10 September – A Fair Society For All? Listening to the Voice of Older People – in Croke Park, on the occasion of the Annual General Meeting 2019.

An audience of over 160 people, including members of Age Action and people working in the ageing sector, joined the conversatoin which included a panel disucssion moderated by the CEO Paddy Connolly. The discussion centred on a discussion paper, Equality for All - Older People for Equality, published by Age Action in advance.The  panel set the scene with inputs from Michael Taft, Economist and political economy columnist, Colette Bennett, Policy Analyst Social Justice Ireland, Deirdre Garvey, CEO The Wheel, Ailbhe Smith, Co-Director of Together for Yes.