National Council on Ageing at the heart of future policy for Older people – Minister Hoctor
Minister Maire Hoctor TD, Minister for Older People, today gave her strong support for the proposals in the Health (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2009. Earlier the Minister had introduced the Bill, on behalf of the Government in Dail Eireann. The Bill gives effect to the Government’s decision to rationalise a number of health agencies and integrate some into the Department of Health and Children, including the National Council on Ageing and Older People, which is directly within her own area of responsibility.
When speaking in the Dail the Minister said that she was very conscious that these agencies enjoyed great respect. The National Council on Ageing and Older People has made a significant contribution to policy development in regard to older people. But she added the function of assisting Ministers in the formulation of policy is usually best located in Government Departments and she thought the new arrangement was the most appropriate. Her role as Minister for Older people is to bring greater coherence and focus to policies and issues relating to older people and bringing the Council’s body of work into the Department will assist that role.
The Minister said that “the staff of the National Council have built up a range of expertise and experience on older people’s issues that they can bring to the work of the Office for Older People. I have full confidence that the Council will bring refreshing and rejuvenating insights into the Department and I am delighted they can join the Office and assist in the development of the National Positive Ageing Strategy and the work of the Office into the future.”