One in 10 elderly at risk of poverty, reveals CSO
Published 30/09/2011 | 05:00
ONE in 10 pensioners are at risk of poverty, despite a near 50pc jump in income levels over a five-year period, according to new statistics.
Official figures showed the gross weekly income for those aged 65 and over rose from an average €289.05 in 2004 to €428.86 in 2009.
The proportion in poverty was 1.1pc in 2009, down from 3.9pc in 2004, while those on the breadline was 9.6pc, down from 27pc.
The Central Statistics Office said pension payments from the State remained the most significant source of income, well over half in both 2004 and 2009.
Campaign groups have demanded the State freeze pension payments in the upcoming Budget to protect the most vulnerable of older people, especially those who are ill or live in isolation in poor accommodation.
Age Action spokesman Eamon Timmins said measures implemented over the last two years, including the loss of the Christmas welfare bonus, and cuts to dental and optical benefits and home help services, had all hit elderly households.