“We are heading towards generation after generation experiencing preventable housing issues that are already worsening today.”

ALONE, the organisation that supports older people to age at home, has today put forward nine recommendations in their submission for the new housing strategy being devised by the Department of Housing. By outlining their essential age inclusive additions, ALONE want to prevent the catastrophic effects the current housing situation on the existing older cohort and the ageing population that follows.

ALONE urges the Minister for Housing and other members of government to listen and take direction from the organisation’s recommendations that outline solutions and plans to address Ireland’s housing crisis in the midst of a growing ageing population.

ALONE is calling for the following to be incorporated into the Housing for All strategy;

 

  1. That housing for all to be a long term strategy to build the types of housing needed in every county based on demographics all age groups and locations. The aim should be to meet the demand now doing that in a way that future proofs use for our needs in 10-20 years.
  2. ALONE is calling for a funding mechanism to ensure we have investment in Housing with onsite Supports. Building on the model championed in Rebuilding Ireland.
  3. With the numbers of over 85s renting increasing 5 fold in the last 25 years, provide a path towards long-term lease agreements to ensure security of tenure. We believe there are workarounds to perceived constitutional issues.
  4. We need to incentivise right sizing. 59,462 homes are needed for older people who choose right-sizing which is key to ensuring housing is accessible to all and supports ageing in place.
  5. 45,905 housing units are needed through social housing. This is a housing target aligned to the changing demographics over the next 10 years, equating to 4,590 units per year.
  6. Implementation of the joint policy statement ‘Housing Options for our Ageing Population’ will be central to ensuring that older people are supported to age at home regardless of ownership. Infrastructure of support coordination is a priority and requires investment and development to fully support older people.
  7. Housing Adaptation Grant requires an investment of €84.5 million per year over the next 10 years to meet demand.
  8. Targeted interventions to prevent homelessness amongst older people.
  9. All housing developments must incorporate universal design principles to allow people to age in place or to choose to right-size in communities they have lived in all their lives.

 

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE has said, “The last year has brought world-wide attention to many existing and ever-increasing issues for older people. ALONE has continually called on Government to commit to delivering on requests for Housing for All options. We are heading towards generation after generation experiencing intensive and preventable housing issues that are already worsening today.

“These actions will make the best use of current stock, remove older people from insecure positions they are in, future-proof our housing stock, support younger people to get a home, help reduce the pressure in the rented sector, be more cost effective when building the right units in the right place and maximised cost versus benefit.

“Each of our nine asks will enable current older people and future generations, with medium to high support needs, to live in the community, with the additional support they need to live independently, or semi-independently. These asks will future-proof the present, imminent and next couple of decades of older people.”

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