[Sinn Fein]

27 February 2001

Sinn Fein back principle of free care for the elderly

Sinn Fein Health Spokesperson, Mid-Ulster MLA John Kelly has backed the principle of free care for the elderly.

Mr Kelly said:

We are living in a society with an ageing population, many of whom are deeply marginalised. Socialist principles of cradle from the cradle top the grave have been jettisoned by the previous British Tory government and by the current British Labour government.

I fully support the principle of free care for the elderly both personal and nursing and also the need to remove the ceiling limit with regard to property.

As with the implementation of all progressive politics aimed at targeting marginalisation and targeting social need we need to ensure that our Executive has the money to put in place policy and action that can be measured.

The introduction of free nursing and personal care is supported by Sinn Fein. Perhaps of greater importance is the issue of free residential care, with the ending of means testing. Sinn Fein policy is for this issue to be dealt with as a priority for those elderly people who for whatever reason cannot remain in their own homes. As with many advances in health care here there is the ever pressing issue of resources.

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