donate
The Platform is on Facebook! PDF Print E-mail

Friday 8 August 2014
 

Facebook

Age Sector Platform is now on Facebook, and with more than 200 people 'liking' our page within the first two days we're delighted with the response so far! 

We hope over the next few weeks and months, our page will grow in popularity, and allow us to communicate with a whole new audience about issues relating to older people.

Visit our page by clicking HERE, and simply 'like' it to keep up to date with all our news, campaigns and events.

Age Sector Platform is on Facebook!


Age Sector Platform is now on Facebook, and we hope you'll help us raise our profile over the next few weeks and months! 

With over 70 page 'likes' already, we're very excited about how Facebook will allow us to communicate with a whole new audience about issues relating to older people.

Visit our page by clicking HERE, and simply 'like' it to keep up to date with all our news, campaigns and events.

 
Older people’s charities call on NI Executive to deliver on promise to stop age discrimination PDF Print E-mail

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Age-Sector-Position-PaperRepresentatives from Age Sector Platform and Age NI will today meet with Junior Ministers Jonathan Bell and Jennifer McCann to stress the importance of legislation to outlaw age discrimination in areas like healthcare, financial services and retail.  Age NI and Age Sector Platform are calling on the Northern Ireland Executive to progress with the legislation urgently to ensure older people are provided with the same protection as their counterparts in Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland.  As the charities launch their position paper Stop Age Discrimination, they say action on this outstanding Programme for Government commitment is long overdue.

 

Francis Hughes, Chair of Age Sector Platform, commented, “As an older person, it is difficult to accept that it is perfectly legal to deny me and my peers access to services or treatment simply because of our age, but at the moment that is the case here.  The Northern Ireland Executive has pledged to introduce legislation to make these sorts of practices illegal, but unfortunately there has been a delay in bringing this important law forward.  At the recent Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, we heard shocking evidence from Professor Mark Lawler in relation to age discrimination in cancer treatment.  It is clear that the introduction of this legislation could prove to have life or death consequences for older people in Northern Ireland, and we need action now.” 

 

“At this stage, it is worrying that the time available for proper engagement and participation of older people will be limited.  Progress needs to be made soon so that we may have a say on something which will undoubtedly have huge impact on our lives.  Older people have campaigned for this legislation for over ten years.  We deserve to live in a place where it is unlawful to be discriminated against because of our age.”

 

Linda Robinson, Age NI Chief Executive said, “Older people in Northern Ireland tell us that they are seriously concerned about being treated like second class citizens compared to those in GB and RoI.  In recent weeks we heard from Pat Kelso, who had to seek private treatment for a hip replacement because her age prevented timely treatment on the NHS.  We have also recently been contacted by someone who believes they have been refused a mortgage on the grounds of age.  Both have talked about the serious and negative impact this potential discrimination has had on their lives.  These are two of many examples of older people who’ve sought advice from Age NI about age discrimination.  In addition, we have engaged directly with over 130 people in later life on this specific issue.  It’s time to listen.”

Read more...
 
Platform says 'Hands Off' our bus pass PDF Print E-mail

Thursday 10 July 2014

Francis-Hughes

 

Following the announcement from DRD Minister Danny Kennedy indicating that funding for the concessionary fares scheme could be under threat, Age Sector Platform is calling on the Northern Ireland Executive to reassure older people of its commitment to the Smartpass scheme.

                     

The charity which is responsible for the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament says defending the need for the scheme forms part of its ‘Hands Off’ campaign which also highlights the importance of benefits like the winter fuel payment and free prescriptions.

 

Francis Hughes, Chair of Age Sector Platform, commented: “The announcement from Minister Kennedy will be of grave concern to thousands of older people across Northern Ireland to whom the bus pass remains a lifeline. The scheme enables older people to lead more active and social lives; allowing them to carry out caring and grandparental duties whilst also helping contribute to our local economy.”

 

“We are leading the ‘Hands Off’ campaign in Northern Ireland, which aims to defend the need for universal pensioner benefits such as the winter fuel payment, free prescriptions and the bus pass. To everyone who disagrees with cutting or means-testing the bus pass, I would say this – sign the ‘Hands Off’ petition and make your voice heard on this important issue.”

 

For more information on the Hands Off Campaign, visit www.handsoff.org.uk or phone 028 9031 2089.


 
Running the Belfast Half Marathon? PDF Print E-mail

Wednesday 2 July 2014

Run for Age Sector Platform!Are you, or someone you know planning to run the 2nd Belfast Half Marathon on 14th September?  Why not run it for Age Sector Platform!

The money you raise will help us to improve the lives of older people in Northern Ireland by engaging with older people to identify the areas of concern to them; and supporting projects which will tackle these concerns.

We will support the efforts of runners as they raise awareness of Age Sector Platform and raise funds that will make a difference to the lives of older in Northern Ireland.

For more information about the Half Marathon or to register, please visit www.belfastcityhalfmarathon.net before Sunday 31 August 2014!

Once you’ve registered and have chosen Age Sector Platform as the charity for which you would like to fundraise, please contact us to let us know! Just ring 028 9031 2089 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

You can download your sponsorship form HERE, or phone 028 9031 2089 to request that a hard copy is posted to you. In addition, we suggest that you set up your own JustGiving page so that your friends may sponsor you online. Just click HERE to begin the process of setting up your own JustGiving page.

Thanks for your support!

                                                                                    

 
Issue 17 of aspire PDF Print E-mail

Friday 13 June 2014

aspire-17Issue 17 of aspire - Age Sector Platform's magazine - is now available to view online.

Inside this special edition you can read all about the 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, including the local parliaments and two-day parliament at the end of May.

Also read about the Heating Costs Report launched at the Parliament and find out about our recent meeting with the Secretary of State.

Inside this edition we have an exclusive interview with our patron Malachi O’Doherty, an update on the ‘Hands Off’ campaign, information about the PSNI's new 101 number for non-emergencies and an opinion piece from Phoenix Natural Gas on the ‘fuel poverty trap’.

As the World Cup kicks off in Brazil, we’re in the spirit and have included some World Cup Trivia with the ‘fun stuff'!

To view a digital copy of the magazine click HERE. Hard copies will be mailed to members, libraries, politicians and other interested bodies/individuals over the next few weeks.

If you are currently not receiving a hard copy of aspire and would like to request that you are added to the mailing list please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone 028 9031 2089.  Individuals aged 50 and over may receive a hard copy of the magazine three times a year as part of individual membership.  Find out more about individual membership HERE.

 

 
Platform responds to research on wealth and income of older people PDF Print E-mail

Thursday 12 June 2014

Francis-HughesAge Sector Platform has welcomed new research into the incomes of older people in Northern Ireland, and called for greater financial support for pensioners struggling to make ends meet.

 

The charity responsible for the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, has commended CARDI for producing two reports which help to illustrate the economic circumstances of older people in Northern Ireland.

 

Francis Hughes, Chair of Age Sector Platform, commented: “This research demonstrates the diversity of the older population and the need for government to develop policies that ensure that older people now, and in the future, have enough money to secure a good quality of life.”

 

“We strongly support the call to increase the basic state pension, which we know would be crucial in tackling many of the problems older people face. A higher state pension could help address a myriad of problems including fuel poverty and social isolation; both of which have a huge impact on the health and wellbeing of pensioners.”

 

“This research has found that one in five pensioner couples and two in five single pensioners in Northern Ireland rely on the state pension as their only source of income. These figures help to dispel the widespread myth that pensioners nowadays are revelling in the rewards of gold-plated private pensions. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth for the vast majority of pensioners in Northern Ireland.”

Read more...
 
Half of pensioner households cut down on essentials like food to pay for heating PDF Print E-mail

Friday 30 May 2014

Heating-Costs-Survey-FPA new report launched today has revealed that one in two pensioner households in Northern Ireland has to cut down on other essentials, such as food, in order to cover the cost of heating.

 

The research will form the basis of discussions and voting during the final day of the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament in Belfast today, with a number of fuel poverty experts and a panel of politicians expected to respond to the concerns of around 200 older people from across Northern Ireland.

 

On the back of the report, Age Sector Platform, the charity responsible for the Pensioners Parliament, is calling on the Northern Ireland Executive to do more to address static incomes and rising energy costs being suffered by pensioners across the province.

 

Michael Monaghan, Chair of the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, commented: “We have often heard the phrase ‘heat or eat’ being used in the fuel poverty debate, but our research has confirmed that this is the stark reality for pensioner households in Northern Ireland. During the last four years of the Pensioners Parliament, the biggest worry for older people has been keeping warm in winter. The Executive must do more to assist older people with their heating bills.”

 

“Today we will be tabling a number of motions which will call upon government to address issues such as Northern Ireland’s reliance on oil, government’s focus on energy efficiency schemes and the lack of financial assistance for pensioners here compared to the rest of UK and the Republic of Ireland.”

 

“Currently, older and vulnerable pensioners in both Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland are entitled to an allowance towards their annual electricity bill. Pensioners in Northern Ireland receive no such assistance and we believe this is totally unjust. Pensioners here have to choose between heating and eating whilst our Northern Ireland Executive stands back and offers excuses as to why it can’t help. That is unacceptable. Our devolved government must take responsibility for the welfare of some of its most vulnerable citizens.”

 

“We understand that the Northern Ireland Executive is due to meet in the coming month to discuss a new budget. A scheme entitling older and vulnerable pensioners to an allowance towards their electricity bill needs to be introduced here, in the meantime we call on our Executive to ensure older people are protected from the worst energy price hikes by providing a one-off payment to the most vulnerable. Otherwise, more older people will die because of the cold this winter.”

The report found that on average, pensioner households spend £1,602 per year on heating costs. It also found that pensioner households that rely on oil for heating their homes are paying, on average, £405 per year more than those relying on gas, and that pensioner households in rural areas are paying £209 per year more, on average, than pensioner households in urban areas.

 

For more information on the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, visit www.pensionersparliament.org or phone 028 9031 2089. A copy of the Heating Costs Report can be downloaded HERE.

 
Health budget warning sparks Pensioners Parliament debate PDF Print E-mail

Thursday 29 May 2014

Michael-MonaghanThe Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament will begin its two days of discussion and debate in Belfast today, with the hot topic of health and social care due to take centre stage during the first day of proceedings.

 

Following the stark warning from the Health Minister earlier this month indicating that patient safety could be at risk if the Department does not receive extra funds, the charity responsible for the Parliament claims it’s essential to gauge the opinions of pensioners across Northern Ireland about how they feel the process of health reform is affecting them.

 

Age Sector Platform claims that concern regarding access to health and social care has increased by 17% over the last two years of the Pensioners Parliament, and that today’s voting and discussions will pinpoint what areas of healthcare cause the most concern.

 

Michael Monaghan, Chair of the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, commented:  “Earlier this year we travelled the province hearing the views of older people in every county of Northern Ireland and we know that health and social care is a cause for concern for many of them. Some of the issues raised were age discrimination in the treatment of older patients, inadequate domiciliary care, crisis in our A&E departments and unfair employment conditions for carers.”

 

“We are concerned about the resources and strategies in place to deliver Transforming Your Care. Minister Poots has claimed that patient safety could be at risk if his Department’s funds are not increased; this is extremely alarming, considering the fact that older people are the biggest users of the health service.”

 

“At last year’s Pensioners Parliament we raised concerns regarding the closure of statutory residential care homes and emphasised the need for proper consultation with older people. Whilst we welcome the Health Minister’s assurance that all statutory residential care homes will remain open for now, it is not clear how future admissions policy will change, if at all.”

 

The ‘Reforming Health and Social Care’ session at the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament will hear from a number of key speakers including Pamela McCreedy, Director of Transforming Your Care; John McVey, NIPSA’s Policy/Research Officer and Professor Mark Lawler from Queen’s University Belfast.


For more information on the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, visit www.pensionersparliament.org or phone 028 9031 2089.

 
Tyrone Pensioners Parliament in Omagh PDF Print E-mail

Friday 11 April 2014

County-Tyrone-PensionersPensioners from across County Tyrone gathered in the Silverbirch Hotel in Omagh yesterday for the last of seven local Pensioners Parliaments held across Northern Ireland in the last few months.


All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the County Tyrone pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices, pensioner benefits and health and social care provision.


The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, also offered pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Tyrone Parliament saw Ross Hussey MLA (UUP), Thomas Buchanan MLA (DUP), Barry McElduff MLA (Sinn Féin) and Cllr Josephine Deehan (SDLP) responding to questions from the floor.

Previous local parliaments were held in Belfast, Enniskillen, Newry, Craigavon, Larne and Magherafelt – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county.

 

Political-Panel-

 
Derry/Londonderry Pensioners Parliament in Magherafelt PDF Print E-mail

Wednesday 9 April 2014

Councilor-Catheine-Elattar-with-Older-people

The first ever County Derry/Londonderry Pensioners Parliament to be held in Magherafelt took place on Friday, with almost 90 older people from across the county in attendance. The event was officially opened by Councillor Catherine Elattar, Chair of Magherafelt District Council.


All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices, pensioner benefits and health and social care provision.


The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, has also offered pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Derry/Londonderry Parliament saw Ian McCrea MLA (DUP), Patsy McGlone MLA (SDLP), Sandra Overend MLA (UUP) and Cllr Sean McPeake (Sinn Féin) responding to questions from the floor.

The one remaining Parliament, due to take place this week will be held in Omagh, with previous parliament being held in Belfast, Enniskillen, Newry, Craigavon and Larne – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county.

To view more photos from the County Derry/Londonderry Pensioners Parliament in Magherafelt, click HERE.

 

Political-Panel

 
Antrim Pensioners Parliament in Larne PDF Print E-mail

Monday 31 March 2014

Mayor-of-Larne-with-County-Antrim-Pensioners-
The first ever County Antrim Pensioners Parliament to be held in Larne took place on Friday, with around 70 older people from across the county in attendance. The event was officially opened by Councillor Maureen Morrow, Mayor of Larne.


All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the County Antrim pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices, pensioner benefits and health and social care provision.


The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, also offers pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Antrim Parliament saw Roy Beggs MLA (UUP), Paul Girvan MLA (DUP), Fearghal McKinney MLA (SDLP), Oliver McMullan MLA (Sinn Féin) and Cllr Noel Williams (Alliance) responding to questions from the floor.

The two remaining Parliaments, due to take place in the coming weeks, will be held in Magherafelt and Omagh – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county.

To view more photos from the County Antrim Pensioners Parliament in Larne, click HERE.

Political-Panel-respond-to-questions

 
Armagh Pensioners Parliament in Craigavon PDF Print E-mail

Monday 24 March 2014

Mayor-of-Craigavon-with-Co-Armagh-Pensioners

 

Pensioners from across County Armagh gathered in Craigavon Civic Centre on Friday for the fourth of seven highly anticipated Pensioners Parliaments across Northern Ireland. The event was officially opened by Councillor Mark Baxter, Mayor of Craigavon.


All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the County Armagh pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices, pensioner benefits and health and social care provision.


The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, also offers pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Armagh Parliament saw John O’Dowd MLA (Sinn Féin), Dolores Kelly MLA (SDLP), Sydney Anderson MLA (DUP) and Cllr Arnold Hatch (UUP) responding to questions from the floor.

The three remaining Parliaments, due to take place in the coming weeks, will be held in Larne, Magherafelt and Omagh – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county.  For more information click HERE.

 

Co Armagh Pensioners Parliament

 

 
Down Pensioners Parliament in Newry PDF Print E-mail

Tuesday 18 March 2014

Co Down Parliament in Newry

Around 60 pensioners from across County Down gathered in the Canal Court Hotel in Newry on Friday for the third of seven highly anticipated Pensioners Parliaments due to take place across Northern Ireland in the coming weeks. The event was officially opened by Councillor Michael Ruane, Mayor of Newry and Mourne.


All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the County Down pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices and health and social care provision.

 

The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, also offers pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Down Parliament saw Mickey Brady MLA (Sinn Féin), John McCallister MLA (NI21), Kieran McCarthy MLA (Alliance), Karen McKevitt MLA (SDLP), Jim Wells MLA (DUP) and Cllr David Taylor (UUP) responding to questions from the floor.

The four remaining Parliaments, due to take place in the coming weeks, will be held in Craigavon, Larne, Magherafelt and Omagh – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county. 

 

More photos from the County Down Pensioners Parliament can be found HERE.

 

Political Panel at Co Down Parliament

 
Fermanagh Pensioners Parliament in Enniskillen PDF Print E-mail

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Chairman-with-Fermanagh-Pensioners
Around 70 pensioners from across County Fermanagh gathered in the Westville Hotel in Enniskillen on Friday for the second of seven highly anticipated Pensioners Parliaments due to take place across Northern Ireland in the coming weeks. The event was officially opened by Councillor Alex Baird, Chairman of Fermanagh District Council.

All eager to make their voices heard on the problems they face at present, the County Fermanagh pensioners raised issues including community policing, energy prices and domiciliary care provision.


The 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, which was launched in Belfast in February, also offers pensioners the opportunity to put their questions to local politicians. The County Fermanagh Parliament saw Tom Elliott MLA (UUP), Phil Flanagan MLA (Sinn Féin), Maurice Morrow MLA (DUP) and Patricia Rogers (SDLP) responding to questions from the floor.

The five remaining Parliaments, due to take place in the coming weeks, will be held in Newry, Craigavon, Larne, Magherafelt and Omagh – ensuring a platform for older people to make their voice heard in every county.

 

More photos from the County Fermanagh Pensioners Parliament can be found HERE.

 

Enniskillen-Audience

 

 

 
Get your running shoes on for Belfast City Marathon! PDF Print E-mail

Thursday 27 February 2014

Running-for-Parliament-1Age Sector Platform is looking for runners or walkers to take part in The Belfast Marathon, Walk, Relay or Fun Run on Monday 5 May 2014.

The money you raise will help Age Sector Platform improve the lives of older people in Northern Ireland by engaging with older people to identify the areas of concern to them; and supporting projects which will tackle these concerns.

We will support the efforts of runners and walkers as they raise awareness of Age Sector Platform and raise funds that will make a difference to the lives of older in Northern Ireland.

 

The Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon offers participants several options for getting involved, including:

  • A Marathon Run / WheelChair Marathon
  • Marathon Relay
  • 9 mile Marathon Walk
  • 3 mile Fun Run

For more information about the Marathon or to register for one of the above events, please visit www.belfastcitymarathon.com before Friday 4 April 2014!

Once you’ve registered and have chosen Age Sector Platform as the charity for which you would like to fundraise, please contact us to let us know! Just ring 028 9031 2089 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

You can download your sponsorship form HERE, or phone 028 9031 2089 to request that a hard copy is posted to you. In addition, we suggest that you set up your own JustGiving page so that your friends may sponsor you online. Just click HERE to begin the process of setting up your own JustGiving page.

Thanks for your support!

 
Pensioners Parliament calls on NI Executive to help older people stay warm PDF Print E-mail

Friday 21 February 2014

Chair of the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, Michael Monaghan, pictured with Age Sector Platform patrons Baroness May Blood MBE and Malachi O’DohertyThe Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament is calling on the Executive to provide urgent help to older people struggling to keep warm by using extra funds promised by the Treasury in December.

Age Sector Platform is making the appeal as it launches the fourth year of the Parliament today in Belfast.

Michael Monaghan, Chair of the NI Pensioners Parliament, commented: “Since the Parliament began in 2011, the top concern of pensioners here has been keeping warm in winter. Above any other issue, older people are worried about the price of heating their home; and unfortunately, provisional figures from this year’s survey are telling a very similar story. This problem is not going away.”

“Levels of fuel poverty are very high in Northern Ireland, particularly among pensioner households. We know that work is being done to address the energy efficiency of homes and develop a long term sustainable energy supply; however, this work is of little comfort to thousands of pensioners who are finding it tough now. That is why we are calling on the Northern Ireland Executive to use some of its additional funds to help pensioner households keep warm.”

“Provisional figures from the 2014 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament survey indicate that around four out of five older people here are worried about keeping warm in winter. That should be a shocking statistic, but it has become the norm. During each of the last three years of the Pensioners Parliament, the same proportion of older people has continued to be worried about the cost of energy; yet here we are in 2014 and older people’s concerns have still not been fully confronted.”

Read more...
 
Ministers to be quizzed on energy prices and health reform PDF Print E-mail

Tuesday 21 January 2014

Question Time in Senate Chamber

 

Ministers from the Northern Ireland Executive will be quizzed by pensioners from across the province today on topics including energy prices and health reform as part of a ‘Question Time’ style event in the Senate Chamber in Parliament Buildings.

 

The event, which will be hosted by the Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly William Hay MLA, will allow Members of the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament to question Ministers on the issues that have been raised as most important to the older population.

 

Michael Monaghan, Chair of the NI Pensioners Parliament, commented: “During the last three years of our Parliament, the number one concern for older people has been keeping warm in winter. Rising energy prices, high levels of fuel poverty and an increasing number of excess winter deaths are all very worrying trends, and we are eager to hear what the Minister of Enterprise, Trade and Investment has to say about how her department can help to reduce heating bills and protect the most vulnerable.”

 

Mr Monaghan continued: “It is clear that the planned reform of the health service here is leading to increased concerns amongst older people about their ability to access health and social care services in the future. This issue has seen a marked rise in concern over the past year with older people telling us they are worried about the impact these changes will have for them as they age.”

 

“Older people use the health and social care service more than any other age group, and therefore any reform of the service will logically have bigger consequences for older people. We look forward to hearing how the Minister for Health plans to ensure older people are treated with dignity and respect when receiving health and social care, and how resources will be allocated to assure high quality care for everyone.”

 

Read more...
 
Check out issue 16 of aspire! PDF Print E-mail

Thursday 16 January 2014

aspire-16Issue 16 of aspire - Age Sector Platform's magazine - is now available to view online.

Inside this edition you can read about the new 'Hands Off' campaign, defending the need for universal pensioner benefits, and our trip to Westminster in November 2013. Also, read about the launch of the 2013 NI Pensioners Parliament report and find out about our plans for the 2014 parliament.

Also inside this edition is an exclusive interview with our new patron Baroness May Blood MBE, an opinion piece from Alzheimer’s Society NI on the G8 dementia summit which took place in December 2013, and information on the 'Keep Me Posted' campaign which Age Sector Platform is supporting.

As always, there will be an article where you can learn more about one of our member groups and some ‘fun stuff’ to keep you entertained!

To view a digital copy of the magazine click HERE. Hard copies will be mailed to members, libraries, politicians and other interested bodies/individuals over the next few weeks.

If you are currently not receiving a hard copy of aspire and would like to request that you are added to the mailing list please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone 028 9031 2089. Individuals aged 50 and over may receive a hard copy of the magazine three times a year as part of individual membership.  Find out more about individual membership HERE.

 
Hands Off Universal Pensioner Benefits PDF Print E-mail

Tuesday 10 December 2013

Hands-Off‘Hands Off’ is the clear message coming from older people in Northern Ireland and across the UK, as a new nation‑wide campaign is launched today defending the need for benefits such as the winter fuel payment and bus pass.

 

The ‘Hands Off’ campaign, which has already been backed by some of the most influential older people’s organisations in the UK, aims to safeguard benefits such as the winter fuel payment, bus pass, free prescriptions and TV licences after the 2015 general election.

 

Following comments made by the main political parties at Westminster indicating these benefits may be under threat, the campaign will emphasise their importance in achieving a decent standard of living for millions of pensioners across the UK, whilst also highlighting the costs and barriers associated with means-testing such benefits.

 

People of all ages are encouraged to sign the online e-petition and to email their local MP via the campaign website at www.handsoff.org.uk.

 

The ‘Hands Off’ campaign is being officially backed by Age Sector Platform in Northern Ireland, the National Pensioners’ Convention, the Welsh Senate of Older People and the Scottish Seniors Alliance.

 

Nixon Armstrong from Age Sector Platform commented: “During the last year, pensioners have felt under constant attack. The myth that older people have escaped any austerity measures is totally groundless, and we will fight to ensure there are no further cuts or means‑testing of vital benefits such as the winter fuel payment, bus pass, free prescriptions or TV licences. We call on every individual, regardless of age, to support us in our campaign to ensure these benefits are maintained for pensioners now and in the years to come.”

 

Read more...
 
Heating and eating are top concerns for pensioners PDF Print E-mail

Friday 15 November 2013

2013-NIPP-ReportA report launched today by a leading older people’s charity has highlighted the price of energy and food as the top concerns of pensioners in Northern Ireland; whilst worries about accessing health and social care have risen significantly over the last year.

 

The report, which summarises the findings of the 2013 Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, found that four out of five pensioners are worried about the price of energy, whilst two out of three are worried about meeting the cost of food.

 

Age Sector Platform, the charity responsible for the Northern Ireland Pensioners Parliament, claims more needs to be done by government and the private sector to ensure those in their later years are not endlessly struggling to make ends meet.

 

Michael Monaghan, Chair of the NI Pensioners Parliament, said: “Proposals for tackling high energy prices have taken centre stage at Westminster recently, and rightly so. The cost of keeping warm in winter has been the top concern of pensioners since the Pensioners Parliament began three years ago; and it is vital that our NI Executive approaches this problem with as much enthusiasm as their counterparts in the UK Parliament.”

 

“The big energy companies in Great Britain have been probed about their pricing strategies; is it too much to ask our Executive to scrutinise the energy market here and start asking difficult questions? Without a doubt, pensioners across Northern Ireland are awaiting the answers.”

 

Mr Monaghan continued: “The price of food has come out as the second biggest concern of pensioners here. Since last year, we have been calling on food retailers to consider the introduction of a pensioner discount day which could help older shoppers cope with the rising cost of living and enable them to maintain a balanced and healthy diet.”

 

“The majority of older people live alone or as part of small households, meaning that special promotions for bulk buying are of no use to them. We will continue our ‘Silver Saver’ campaign and meet with as many food retailers as we can to ensure the cost of food becomes manageable for our older population.”

Read more...
 
«StartPrev1234567NextEnd»

Page 1 of 7

 

terms and conditions : privacy policy