“On the fourth day before the budget, Older People asked of Brian …”

Carbon Tax relief

Dear Brian,

We are very concerned that the introduction of a carbon tax may only worsen the position of the 10% of older people who are already experiencing fuel poverty.

The Parliament is seeking assurances that measures to protect vulnerable older people will be introduced alongside any carbon taxes. We agree with the Commission’s proposal that revenues collected should be used to achieve improvement in the situation of the less well off.

We urge that this must include the less well off older people in Ireland. It is older people living alone, on low incomes, in older, poorly insulated housing that are currently struggling to heat their homes. It is these people that must be protected. A further tax on this segment of the community could result in deaths due to hypothermia this winter.

Of course a carbon tax would also affect older rural drivers. The proposal in the McCarthy report to cease state funding for the rural transport initiative – 58% of the passengers are aged 65 and over – would have a detrimental effect for many older people living in isolated areas.

The ISCP welcomed the extension of the fuel allowance from 30 weeks to 32 weeks and the increase to €20 per week.

Please increase the fuel allowance and restore the rural transport initiative.

Yours sincerely

Ireland’s Older People