Thursday 19 September 2019

SVP available assist those struggling to meet extra costs of keeping warm during Storm Emma

PENSIONERS living alone are at risk, according to a leading charity
PENSIONERS living alone are at risk, according to a leading charity Newsdesk Newsdesk

St Vincent de Paul has said it will be available to offer assistance to those struggling to meet the extra costs of keeping warm as a result of this week's cold snap.

As temperatures are predicted to plunge to -10C later in the week, households are expected to face significant heating bills as a result of keeping their homes heated for longer spells.

Costly heating bills are a concern for vulnerable people, especially the elderly.

The charity St Vincent de Paul (SVP) said it would be available to offer assistance to those needing help to meet these extra costs.

SVP president Kieran Stafford said the charity will "look sympathetically on requests" from those seeking financial assistance.

“As well as older people, we are particularly concerned about low income families living in poorly insulated and cold accommodation who may not be entitled to fuel allowance," Mr Stafford said in a statement.

"SVP will also assist individuals and families in their engagement with the Department of Social Protection and in particular, the Community Welfare Service, which administers supports under the Exceptional Needs Payment," he said.

It comes as Minister for the Elderly, Jim Daly, was criticised for recommending older people leave their heating on '24 hours' during the coming cold weather as there are no guarantees they will be repaid any extra spend on fuel.

In a statement yesterday, Mr Daly said: "Fuel and heat are always concerns for the elderly, particularly when it comes to cost".

He added: "The uniquely cold weather conditions over the coming days mean the elderly should not stint on fuel use.

"Shivering behind a single electric bar will be penny wise and pound foolish’" he said.

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