Minister Callely attends the over 50s Show at the RDS
Mr Ivor Callely, T.D., Minister fo State at the Department of Health and Children,today (20 September 2003) said that he was particularly pleased to be associated with Ireland´s only dedicated event for seniors which in 2002, attracted over 100 exhibitors and 12,000 visitors, which is now in it´’s 5th year.
He stated that in Ireland, there are close to a million people aged 50 or over and that the number is rising. He pointed out that the vast majority of older people are healthy and independent, and for them mature age offers a new lease of life. He added that participation, in all aspects of society, is a central component of healthy ageing and it is absolutely right that older people should seek to be empowered and to influence decision-making in the areas that affect them.
“My priority, as Minister of State, is to ensure that the issues facing older people are addressed with a view to providing improved services befitting an older population whose contribution to Irish society is fully acknowledged by the present Government” stated the Minister.
He also added that he set up, and is now chairing, the inter-departmental group on the needs of older people. This Group provides the opportunity for a positive influence to be brought on all of the various services provided to older people by different Government Departments with it´s members speaking with authority on behalf of their Departments, and having influence on their Department´s policy in relation to services for older people.
The Minister thanked all involved in the organisation of the event and wished all the participants a very active and enjoyable day, and declared the exhibition open.