Declan Breathnach TD
Louth (and East Meath)

13th July, 2018

Breathnach backs calls by ALONE to take action to prevent a housing crisis for older people

– Oireachtas briefing outlined what is needed to support older people to age at home –

Fianna Fáil TD for Louth and East Meath Declan Breathnach backs a call on the Oireachtas by ALONE to take action to prevent a housing crisis for older people. ALONE released its report “Housing Choices for Older People in Ireland – Time for Action” this week and held a briefing with Oireachtas members to explain what is needed.

“Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE said that now is the time for action on housing for older people. He said that have established the demand for the various types of housing and are looking for funding of €84.5m a year over the next 10 years in the form of adaptation grants and to develop an additional 122,000 units of housing for older people”.

“The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing in its report this week “Report on Housing Options for Older People” are taking the first step towards developing housing for all. We need to implement real change for older people. A stark statistic was outlined that 25% of people over the age of 55 (283,633) are experiencing problems with housing maintenance, and 29% would consider moving to adapted housing if it was available to them”.

“ALONE is calling for 59,462 purpose built homes within communities, 45,902 supportive housing and housing with support units, 16,307 shared housing units and 13,000 new nursing home spaces. According to ALONE these targets are the minimum required in order to cope with our ageing population. Yet the total target of Rebuilding Ireland is to deliver only 50,000 social housing units by 2021.”

“The Government should really look at these demands in a cost-saving light. The ALONE report stresses that this new spectrum of housing will support older people from a health, community and social inclusion perspective. Currently, if an older person is in need of support, their only choice is to move into a nursing home because of a lack of community supports and this is costing the Government more through the Fair Deal Scheme and removing the choice from the older person to remain at home.”

“Action is needed now, as we expect the population of over 60s in Ireland to increase to over 1 million by 2021 and 1.3 million by 2031.

-Ends-

Johanna Walsh, Office of Declan Breathnach T.D., Leinster House, Dublin 2 (Declan – 087 2697638)

(T) 01 6183549 (Email) declan.breathnach@oireachtas.ie