30 March 2020
By Elaine Murphy
Fianna Fáil TD for Cork North Central Padraig O’Sullivan has called on the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection to extend the fuel allowance for the duration of the COVID19 pandemic.
Deputy O’Sullivan said it was important that older people were comfortable in their homes as they are being asked to stay indoors for at least the next two weeks.
He explained, “Older people are particularly vulnerable and are categorised as an “at risk” group in terms of this pandemic. As per the Taoiseach’s speech last week they have been asked to ‘cocoon’ indoors for the next two weeks.
“Undoubtedly many of them will use more fuel during this time and have higher heating bills. They shouldn’t have to choose between being able to turn on their heating and being able to buy food during this crisis.
“For many, their only source of income is the State pension and without any indication as to how long this crisis will last, they are understandably worried about their finances.
“I think the government could address this issue and give peace of mind to these people by extending the fuel allowance for the duration of the crisis,” he concluded.