October 17, 2014

The death has occurred of Eithne CARNEY (née Magee) Rockfield Road, Kells, Meath

Eithne was a founder member of the Irish Senior Citizens Parliament. She served on the Executive Committee and as Vice -President and was a Director until 2011. On behalf of the Executive Committee and Staff of the ISCP we extend our sincere  sympathies to her family on their sad loss.  May she rest in peace. 

Funeral arrangements as follows;  

Carney (nee Magee) Eithne. Rockfield Rd., Kells, Co. Meath. Beloved wife of the late Mayo footballer Jackie Carney. Peacefully on 17th October 2014, in Kells in the loving embrace of her family. Dearly loved and remembered by her daughters Anna and Eithne, sons John and Declan, daughters-in-law Dana and Feliciy, son-in-law Peter and her dear friend Tricia. She will be very sadly missed by her seven grandchildren Zoe, Hannah, Colette, Celina, Luca, Dylan and Darren, her great-grandchildren Floella and Tadgh. Predeceased by her eldest son Patrick. Remembered dearly by all her friends. Rest in peace.Reposing at her home on Saturday from 2pm until 9pm and on Sunday, with removal on Sunday evening, Prayers starting at 5pm, leaving her home at 5.30pm and arriving at St. Colmcille’s Church, Kells at 6pm. Funeral on Monday after 11am Mass to St. Colmcille’s Cemetery, Kells.


Date Published: Friday 17th October 2014
Date of Death: Friday 17th October 2014
 Cathal McEntee, Funeral Director (IAFD) Est 1899


October 14, 2014

Irish Senior Citizens Parliament

2014 Raffle Winners

1st Prize        Brendan Doherty Mullingar, Co Westmeath

2nd Prize     Corca Dhuibhne Probus Club Dingle, Co. Kerry

3rd Prize      Pauline Lawlor Murrinstown, Co. Wexford

4th Prize       Patricia Donnelly Wexford

5th Prize       Margaret Kehoe Murrinstown, Co. Wexford

6th Prize      John Quilligan Limerick

7th Prize      Anne Mullins Bridgetown, Co. Wexford

Congratulations to the lucky winners and
thank you again to all who bought and sold tickets.
We are extremely grateful for your support.



October 13, 2014

Pre-Budget Submission 2015

We are pleased to note that at last there appears to be light at the end of a very long period of austerity and hopefully we can soon “DECENTLY BURY AUSTERITY”. An examination of the position shows very clearly that while the basic rate of pension has remained the  same, the value and buying power of the older person and in particular those older people living alone has been very much reduced. In this budget we are again making a plea for their position to be considered as well as those of the older old.

 What  the ISCP wants for Older People


  •  Agree a timeframe for the Restoration of the Package
  • Restore the Telephone allowance
  • Return to a Unit based system for Utilities instead of Cash


  • We seek an increase of €5 per week for both payments


  • We seek an additional 2 weeks payment and a commitment to pay additional weeks when the temperature falls below a level to be agreed.


  • An Increase of €5 per week for Older People aged 65 to bring their Job Seeker Benefit to €193 per week
  • That the Minister for Enterprise Jobs and Innovation bring forward legislation to clarify the matter and to specify the rights and entitlements of workers.


  • We are pleased that this scheme will continue in its present format. It is of huge benefit to many older people to enable them to socialise, volunteer and assist families


  • Increase the income level at which people become liable to pay USC and that the 2% rate remains until they reach a limit of €25,000
  • A notional rebate method be agreed to cater for those pensioners who have no entitlement to any state payments.


  • That those on low incomes be given in cash the equivalent of the credit.


  • This levy must be abolished and the legislation repealed and a Protection Fund be set up similar to the fund in the United Kingdom.

Stamp Duty paid per year (Pension Levy)


Year Rate €euro amount
2011 .6% 463,000
2012 .6% 483,000
2013 .6% 535,000
2014 .75%   .6+.15 675,000  (estimate)
Total   2,156.000  BILLION


  • Older People want the medical card restored. The current draconian review process is causing undue hardship and anxiety and must be stopped.
  • Older People in Nursing Homes with no disposable income must be given a card as of right.


  • The €25 cap per household is very onerous on people who live alone. If the charges are not to be abolished then a 50% reduction to €12.50 should apply to them.


  • The €144 cap is too much for single households. It should be reduced by at least 50%.


  • As a result of the lack of progress in the area of Health and Universal Health Insurance, together with the large numbers of older people who are losing Medical Cards, we ask that the relief be restored to the total premium paid and that medical expenses be allowed at the marginal rate.


  • We are aware that work has been done to try to alleviate some of the hardship which older people will experience in paying for water through the social welfare system.
  • Many older people live in houses which do not have efficient heating, insulation or water conservation systems. Even with grants many cannot undertake the work due to inability to provide money upfront.
  • The Parliament is seeking to have all social welfare pensioners and those with equivalent levels of occupational pensions to be exempt from the charges.


  • We are asking the Minister for Communications, Energy & Natural Resources and Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport in the first instance to ensure that our native games are continued as Free to Air.
  • Simultaneously we ask that a fund be set up jointly funded by the Associations and SKY to assist people experiencing hardship.


  • We ask that a cross departmental group be set up to examine ways and means to ensure that modern protection systems are put in place to enable older people to live safely without fear in their homes.


  • The speed with which pension scheme trustees have set about implementing the measures in the Social Welfare and Pensions Bill 2013 (No 2) are a cause of concern to all pensioners.
  • We are seeking a right of audience for pensioners at all forums where their present and future pension payments are being discussed and decisions are made. This matter is urgent as when previously we raised this matter we were told that pensioners were excluded because pensions in payment (PIPS) could not be changed. This position has now been changed by the enactment of the above referenced Bill.


We note the appointment of a new Minister and we will give him a period of time to get to grips with his new portfolio. Time is of the essence for sick and ill people in this country.

The level of services available to young and old have deteriorated. There is a perception of inertia surrounding all of the services. On a daily basis older people are losing medical cards and those who retain them are self-rationing their medication because of prescription charges. Step down and community care places have waiting lists and places in residential care are difficult to access.  Fair Deal is a further problem.

The Parliament considers this matter so grave that it is calling on government to appoint a special emergency cabinet group to resolve the matter and for the appointment for a fixed period of individual ministers who will be given total responsibility to deal with specific areas whether they are by lifecycle category or by care type. Not all the areas may necessarily lie within the health portfolio such as Universal Health Insurance (UHI) where the payment for the service, the delivery and who delivers it may not fall within the remit of one Department. Private Insurance whether health or otherwise is a method of paying for a service in the same way that people see tax as a payment for public services. Conscious that UHI may now be scrapped we will reserve comment on it.

We are calling for government to treat the Health situation as an “EMERGENCY” and to convene a round table conference of all stakeholders to work together to solve this problem and to bring some realistic solutions to the table.  We are confident it can be done and we are willing to assist. To this end we have not made any serious recommendations in this submission beyond the Call for Health to be declared as and EMERGENCY.

 Every Effort is made to ensure that all information in this Pre Budget Submission is correct at time of going to press.  The ISCP cannot accept responsibility for errors.


Review of Free to AIR Sporting Events

July 28, 2014

Review of Designated Events & Designation of Major Events

The Deadline for submissions in connection with the above topic has been extended to 15th August.  

 The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is inviting  submissions from members of the public and interested parties on the list of designated events which must be provided “Free to Air” on a LIVE or Deferred basis.

The matter of the GAA arrangements where by  SKY ” Pay to View”  now have rights to a certain number of matches in the Hurling and Football Championships was the subject of a lively debate at our recent Annual Parliament Meeting. Now is the time to take this opportunity to have your voice heard on this matter across all sporting events. You can make a submission by email or in writing see details below. Alternatively you can email your views to info@seniors.ie.

The Minister is required to undertake a review of the list of events designated as events of major importance to society for which the right of a qualifying broadcaster (RTE, TV3, & TG4 i.e. free television service with greater than 90 percent coverage) to provide coverage on a live or deferred basis on television services should be permitted in the public interest. Section 173 of the Broadcasting Act 2009 provides that a review is carried out every three years and submissions on the designated events and the possible designation of additional events are sought.

The events currently designated are listed in the Order dated 13 March 2003 S.I. 99 of 2003 and in short are as follows:


The Summer Olympics

The All-Ireland Senior Inter-County Football & Hurling Finals

Ireland’s home and away qualifying games in the European Football Championship & the FIFA World Cup Tournaments

Ireland’s games in the European Football Championship Finals Tournament and the FIFA World Cup Finals Tournament

The opening games, the semi-finals and final of the European Football Championship Finals and the FIFA World Cup Finals Tournament

Ireland’s games in the Rugby World Cup Finals Tournament

The Irish Grand National and the Irish Derby

The Nations Cup at the Dublin Horse Show

Deferred Events 

Ireland’s games in the Six Nations Rugby Football Championship

The closing date for receipt of submissions is 15th August 2014.

Have you say send a Submissions may be provided either by email to majorevents@dcenr.gov.ie or by hard copy to

Maria Owens, Major Events Coverage, Broadcasting Policy Division, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, 29-31 Adelaide Road, Dublin 2.

If, following the review, the Minister proposes to add to the list of designated events, he will publish a notice of any additional events that he intends to designate and invite comments on the said list.

Freedom of Information

It should be noted that the Department proposes to publish all material submitted on the Department’s website. Respondents should clearly identify material that is confidential and which may not be published. The provisions of the Freedom of Information Acts 1997 to 2003 shall apply.


APM News in Brief 2014 Irish Senior Citizens Parliament 2014

July 3, 2014

The Annual Parliament Meeting 2014 took place in the Liberty Hall Theatre & Conference Centre on 13th & 14th May 2014 at which the following Officers and Executive Committee were elected to serve for the coming year

President: John Walsh
Vice-President: Nell Foley
Hon. Secretary: Evelyn Moran
Treasurer: Ena O’Mahoney

Trustees: John Tierney, John J. McLoughlin

Executive Committee Members:
Paddy Behan, Imelda Browne, Padraic Browne, Larry Burtenshaw, Peter Campbell, Paddy Coughlan, Larry Duggan, Joe Jennings, David McManus, Patrick Morgan, Antonia Murphy, Seamus Murray, Patrick Philpott, Patrick A. Stanley, Paul Walsh.
Delegates attended a dinner and social evening on Tuesday night which was enjoyed by all.
APM 2014 – Motions
The following motions were passed at APM 2014:

Call for the appointment of a Full Minister for Older People.
Protection of Older People call for a high level meeting with government to impress upon them the need to protect older people both financially and in all aspects of their lives.
Household Benefits Package Cuts there were strong calls for the reversal of the cuts to all of the benefits with each one detailed by several speakers with great passion and vigour.
Restoration of Telephone Allowance strong calls for its restoration to ensure people retain landlines for security systems especially where broadband coverage is inadequate.

Bereavement Grant to be restored.
Living Alone Allowance called for an increase in the rate for this essential payment which has remained static for several years.
Medical Card Restoration called for the restoration of the over 70s medical card.
Prescription Charges called for the Parliament to campaign for their abolition. They have increased by 500% since their introduction.
Medical Card Assessment Methods called for the system in place for the renewal of cards for older people in Nursing Homes to be reviewed as a matter of urgency. Many cards were stopped for these vulnerable people and the excuse was that their new address was not known to the Department of Health.
Universal Health Insurance called on the Parliament to engage in all aspects of the consultation process and to closely monitor all areas of this government proposal to ensure that older people are protected.
Crisis in the Health Services the APM viewed with alarm the deterioration of services for young and old. As an emergency measure it called for the appointment of individual Ministers with full Ministerial power to handle designated areas for a specified period.
Drugs & Alcohol Misuse condemned by delegates who urged more services so that the harm and anxiety caused to older people and families across the country would end.
Closure of Garda Stations called for a structure to be put in place to ensure adequate care and protection for older and vulnerable people in urban and rural areas with particular emphasis on those living in rural areas.
Pre-Pension Older People called for the position of this group to be treated as a special category in discussions with government. For many their sole income is €188 per week job seeker benefit and there are few if any prospects of a job.
Transparency in the Appointment of Pension Trustees called as a matter of urgency, for a transparent system for the appointment of Trustees to Occupational Pension Schemes. There is a concern that many appointments are controlled by the employers.
Social Welfare & Pensions (No 2) Bill 2013 called for a review of this provision which allowed for pensions in payment to be reduced by Trustees of Schemes. There is serious concern at the manner and speed with which Scheme Trustees are using this provision to reduce pensions in payment to the maximum allowed. Further there is a concern that employers, many of whom are cash rich, are walking away from their responsibilities or are not being pressed to contribute under the legislation.
Pension Protection Fund called for the establishment of a fund financed along the lines of the UK Protection Fund.
“Right of Audience” for Pensioners called for the ISCP to pursue the right of pensioners to use the Industrial Relations Machinery of the State to vindicate their rights.
Penalty for the non-payment of Household Charge (no longer in place) to be abolished.
Water Charges called for the charges to be scrapped based on the view that they are unjust and unfair. There has not been sufficient consultation leading to uncertainty regarding the charging mechanisms and the ultimate costs which will be imposed.
“Putting People First” The Alignment Report called for the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government who published this report to amend the proposals for the tendering process for the delivery of services to disadvantaged communities. Such amendments to reflect proven previous experience, long term relationships with disadvantaged communities and the ability to deliver community services.
Loss of Free to AIR viewing of GAA Matches called for Executive Committee to make representations to the GAA, the Minister and the Provider to seek a solution which would allow older and disabled people especially those in rural areas who cannot afford the cost of Pay to View and are unable to travel to access a service.
Privitisation of Dublin Bus Routes concern expressed by the Ballyfermot Seniors Forum that this action would have a detrimental effect on the services available to older people.
Reductions in Dublin Rosslare Rail Services called for the Incoming Executive to make representations to the Minister for Transport to ensure that an adequate service is maintained.
Repeal of Stamp Duty Pensions Levy called for the ISCP to ensure that this levy and the legislation enabling it is repealed. It is causing extreme hardship to many schemes who are already in deficit as well as additional hardship to pensioners whose pensions are being to pay it.
Private Health Insurance Tax Relief motion called for the original arrangement, whereby, the total amount of the premium paid was allowed for tax purposes to be restored.
Medical Expenses Tax Relief called for the relief to be given at the marginal rather than the standard rate.
Post Office Closures motion called for the reversal of the closure of Post Offices and their transfer from rural to urban areas and urged the ISCP to pursue this matter with Government.
Closure of Small Local Credit Unions called for the ISCP to make representations to ensure that solvent successful local credit unions are allowed to remain open.

Raffle 2014
Tickets are available for Raffle 2014 which will be held on Thursday 9th October 2014. Please support the efforts of our Fundraising Committee. Tickets are a book of 3 for €5 or €2 each.

Hard Copies of “News In Brief” are available on request

email to info@seniors.ie for any queries, comments suggestions and offers to assist in any way whether financial or as a volunteer.



May 9, 2014

Owen was a former Executive member and current member of the Standing Orders Committee of the Irish Senior Citizens Parliament. We shall miss his assistance, sound advice and wonderful sense of humour which always lightened our mood and day. Our heartfelt sympathies to his beloved wife Ita and his loving children Eugene C.M., Margaret, Paul and Kevin, grandchildren, in-laws, relatives and friends.

Reposing at home from 6pm today Friday 9th May with, removal on Saturday morning to the Church of the Visitation of the BVM, Fairview Strand, Fairview arriving for 11.30am Funeral Mass. Burial immediately thereafter in Glasnevin Cemetery. Donations, if desired, to The Sunshine Fund of The Society of St Vincent de Paul or a charity of your choice.

May he rest in peace.  


The Irish Senior Citizens are back in the Blogsphere

April 2, 2014

Today the Minister for Health and the goverenment published the White Paper its on Universal Health Insurance. Its available at


We urge all older people to get a copy or read it online. Its important to all of us. Ensure you have your say let us have your views to email address, info @seniors.ie or by post to 90 Fairview Strand Dublin 3.

Mairead Hayes


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