ALONE disappointed Older People did not warrant a Senior Ministry
ALONE, the charity that supports vulnerable older people, welcomes the appointment of Helen McEntee as Minister of State with responsibility for Older People but has expressed disappointment that An Taoiseach Enda Kenny did not appoint a cabinet-level minister with responsibility for the Ageing Demographic.
Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “ALONE welcomes the incoming government’s new measures to support older people, such as an increase in the State pension and the living-alone allowance as well as a reduction in the cost of medicine. We also welcome the appointment of a Minister of State with responsibility for Older People but we are disappointed that a cabinet-level minister has not been given responsibility for our Ageing Demographic.”
He continued, “Every year there is an extra 20,000 older people in Ireland, and this figure is expected to continue growing exponentially. In such a climate the government should be prioritising the needs of older people and strategically planning for the future. This new government needs to act now to plan for our ageing demographic and this is why we feel that a minister with sole responsibility for older people is required.”
“We also need to radically change how we support this older demographic. We urgently need to look at how we can enable a greater number of older people to age in our communities, because continuing with the same model of overcrowding in hospital and emergency departments and high numbers in nursing home care is simply not sustainable.”
He concluded, “We are an independently funded charity and we work every day to provide services to people who are falling between the cracks. We hope to work closely with Minister McEntee to put in place further measures to support our ageing population and to make these improvements to the lives of older people a reality.”
ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032 for those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older person in the community or visit www.alone.ie