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SNP should give older people the support they deserve

June 10, 2014 5:05 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrats have said that the Scottish Government hasJim HumeJim Hume painted a false picture of the support given to older people in Scotland.

Speaking in a Scottish Government debate on older people today, Scottish Liberal Democrat spokesperson for older people Jim Hume MSP pointed to a host of concerns which remain unaddressed or have worsened under the SNP.

Mr Hume praised pension reforms by Liberal Democrats in UK Government which re-established the link between pensions and earning through the so-called triple lock. Speaking after the debate today, Mr Hume said that ministers should address concerns rather than seek to shift blame.

Commenting, Mr Hume said:

"The Scottish Government has painted a false and simplistic picture of the support given to older people in Scotland. Instead of doing and saying anything to achieve their independence plans they should give older people the support they need and deserve today.

"Under this SNP Government, specialist hospital beds for older people are down by a third whilst emergency admissions are at their highest in ten years. 75 percent of dementia patients in some units have not been on an outing in three months. There are real concerns over the fair provision of continuing care funding and a lack of any clear initiative to ensure our health service is equipped to meet the needs of an ageing population.

"It is frustrating that the nationalists would rather play the blame game for their own political ends instead of addressing real concerns faced by people across Scotland now.

"This is in stark contrast with steps taken by Liberal Democrats in UK Government to enable more people to get on in life. Our pension reforms will mean that people will not be faced with the insulting 75p increase given under the last Labour government, but will see 890,000 pensioners gain £800 per year in Scotland. The near trebling of cold weather payments will also help to build a fairer society for everyone."