ALONE welcomes government announcement to double fuel allowance
Charity urges older people to stay warm during red weather alert
Dublin, 28th February 2018 ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has welcomed today’s announcement by Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty to double the fuel allowance of €22.50 to €45 for one week in response to the red weather warning by Met Eireann.
Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, said “This weather is a public health issue. Following heavy snowfall overnight, it’s really important that older people stay warm by turning on their home heating, wearing layers of light but warm clothing, eating at least one hot meal a day and staying indoors where possible.”
Moynihan added, “Cold temperatures can have a serious affect on many older people, in particular those living alone, those with health issues, and those with limited mobility. Given that 50% of Excess Winter Deaths (EWDs) experienced in Ireland can be linked to poor thermal efficiency, that is, poor heating and insulation, in the dwellings, ALONE is urging older people to take extra care and encouraging those who are concerned about their own wellbeing during the cold weather to call for assistance and help if needed. ALONE has volunteers and staff ready to assist and advise on issues relating to food, heat, or medication.”
He continued, “We are also calling on the general public to remember their older neighbours living alone and to check on their heating levels, food supplies and security, as well as to simply offer some company.”
ALONE would also like to thank our staff, volunteers and supporters across the country for their continued hard work in the ongoing cold weather.
Further information, including advice and tips for older people in cold weather conditions, can be found on www.alone.ie.
For those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older person in the community, ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032 or visit www.alone.ie.
Established in 1977, ALONE supports older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing. ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.
For more information contact:
Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, firstname.lastname@example.org, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033
Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, email@example.com, 01 668 0600, 086 358 7153
 (DCENR): A Strategy to Combat Energy Poverty: 2016-2019,p. 27