Fuel allowance recipients to get extra €22.50 amid cold snap

Doherty says Minister of State’s advice to keep heating on 24/7 is ‘potentially confusing’

Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty confirmed the extra fuel allowance payment. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty confirmed the extra fuel allowance payment. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

 

The Government is to grant an extra €22.50 to all fuel allowance recipients in light of the cold weather.

Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty confirmed the payment will be given to 331,000 people.

However, she confirmed it may not be received until next week or the week after.

Asked about the comments of Minister for Older People Jim Daly who encouraged people to keep their heating on 24/7, Ms Doherty said these remarks were “potentially confusing”.

“There may have been situations where people might not have got the money. We have moved to clear that to ensure people get money.”

Ms Doherty insisted Mr Daly’s comments were borne from sincerity and with the best interests of older people at heart.

Asked if she agreed with the remarks, Ms Doherty said she was not sure people needed to keep the heat on when they were in bed and already warm.

People would make their own decisions but the Government has removed any financial uncertainty, the Minister added.

Those who are not eligible for fuel allowance can apply for exceptional needs payments, Ms Doherty said.