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Age Action Welcomes Decision by AIB Not to Proceed With Cashless Branches

(Friday 22 July 2022) Responding to AIB’s announcement on Friday that they will not proceed with their plan to remove cash services from 70 branches, Celine Clarke Head of Advocacy and Communications at Age Action said “Cash is king for people budgeting on low incomes or who are not online. Limiting their access to their cash puts those people at risk of debt. Forcing people to do their business online puts some older persons at risk of financial elder abuse." 

Age Action Welcomes An Taoiseach’s Call for AIB to Reconsider Cashless Branches

(Thursday 21 July 2022) 

Age Action welcomes the high-level intervention today by the Taoiseach calling for AIB to reconsider and reflect on its announcement that 70 branches will become “cashless”.

Dr Nat O’Connor, Senior Public Affairs and Policy Specialist at Age Action said “Age Action has been contacted by many older persons who are dismayed that they will lose access to cash services in their local area. We know that many people manage their income through cash, literally putting aside amounts of money to cover different expenses.  For the many people not using the internet, it is just not possible to keep track of cashless transactions and there is a risk of getting into debt that people just can’t afford when living on a modest State Pension. There is also a genuine risk of financial elder abuse for those people who are not online if they are forced to seek help to manage their financial affairs.”

 

Why We Need a Commissioner for Ageing and Older Persons

(15 June 2022)  On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day Age Action is reiterating the call for the establishment of a Commissioner for Ageing and Older Persons, with a supporting legal framework, that will ensure that we are all treated with respect and on an equal basis with the rest of the population in older age.

3,871 notifications of abuse for persons aged over 65 was reported in the HSE’s National Safeguarding Report 2021. Immediate family members are identified as the person of concern in reported cases of abuse of people over the age of 65.

Addressing Older Persons' Unmet Housing Needs

(26 May 2022) How do we address older persons' unmet housing needs now and ensure future needs are addressed?

That is the question discussed at the Simon Communities of Ireland, Simon Talks series, on 26 May. Key policy responses identified by Nat O'Connor, Age Action's Senior Public Affairs and Policy Specialist, included the need to implement universal design best practice across private and social housing, measures to provide security of tenure for renters as we see an increasing number of older people renting,  financial products to faciltiate people who want to 'right size' their home and supports to enable people to adapt their home to meet their needs. In general, a rights based approach to the design and implementation of housing policy is needed to ensure housing adequacy for all of us as we age.

Watch Simon Talks' Addressing Older Persons' Unmet Housing Needs.

Concerns about Proposed Amendments to the Fair Deal Scheme in Relation to Rental Income

(10 May 2022) Age Action will address the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Local Government and Heritage on Planning: on the Provision of housing for older people, including Fair Deal on 10 May, where they will advocate for a package of safeguarding measures to be put in place to protect older people living in nursing homes as well as reforms to allow 100% of rental income on the person's primary residence to be disregarded by the HSE under the Nursing Home Support Scheme (Fair Deal).

Age Action calls on the Government to Reintroduce an Energy Guarantee to Help Older People Cope with Devastating Price Hikes

(31 March 2022) Age Action is calling on the Government to reintroduce the Energy Guarantee for Older Persons, which would provide a minimum quantity of energy for all older persons, as part of a comprehensive new national energy poverty strategy. The call comes as the latest price increases of 23.4% for electricity and 24.8% for gas were announced by Electric Ireland. 

Age Action calls for Government Strategy on Energy Poverty

Fuel Allowance increase

(15 March 2022) Reacting to Bord Gáis Energy’s announced price increase of 39% for gas and 27% for electricity, Age Action’s Senior Public Affairs and Policy Specialist, Nat O’Connor, said “Many older persons will be unable to afford this price increase, meaning that people will be unable to heat their homes adequately unless they are given extra support. Many older people need to keep their homes extra warm for health reasons.”

Energy Poverty Strategy Needed for Climate Justice

(8 February 2022) Reacting to the Government agreement to an €8 billion retrofit programme, aiming to bring 500,000 homes to B+ energy ratings, Celine Clarke, Head of Advocacy and Communications at Age Action said “We welcome the fact that this programme for government commitment is a step closer to implementation as climate action is urgently needed but we need it to be in the spirit of climate justice. The home retrofit programme is going to take at least eight years to deliver its promise to retrofit half a million homes. But older people need help with their energy bills now, as energy prices went up by 27% in 2021 and are expected to rise further. That is why Age Action has called for a new energy poverty strategy, to include new measures to use carbon tax revenue to fund energy payments to every older person who cannot afford rising energy costs”.

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