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Know Your Rights: Fuel Allowance

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Question: Who qualifies for Fuel Allowance and how is it paid?

Answer: Fuel Allowance is paid under the National Fuel Scheme, operated by the Department of Social Protection. It is intended to help people who are dependent on long-term social welfare payments and who are unable to meet their heating needs. The fuel season usually starts at the end of September and runs for 28 weeks until April of the following year.

Under the scheme, a Fuel Allowance of €28 per week is generally paid with your social welfare payment. In certain circumstances you can also opt to have the total allowance of €784 paid in two equal lump sums. The first lump sum is normally paid in early October and the second payment is in January.

Fuel Allowance is a means-tested payment. If you are getting a non-contributory social welfare payment, you are accepted as satisfying the means test.

You must live alone or with someone who also qualifies for the allowance – you cannot get the allowance if you live with someone who does not qualify. Where two or more people living in the same household qualify for the allowance, only one allowance is paid. If your heating needs are met in other ways for example, if you live in Local Authority housing where heating is provided, you do not qualify for Fuel Allowance.

If you think you are eligible, you should apply immediately because the allowance will not be backdated after the start of the fuel season in October. The application form for Fuel Allowance (NFS1) is available from your local Citizens Information Centre, post office or by texting FORM FUEL followed by your name and address to 51909. To get your Fuel Allowance paid in two lump sums, fill in the Change the Payment Frequency form at least one month before the first lump sum is due.

If you apply for the Fuel Allowance after the start of the Fuel Allowance season, it will not be backdated.
If you are getting a payment from the Department of Social Protection or a social security payment from a country covered by EU Regulations or a country with which Ireland has a bilateral social security agreement, the Fuel Allowance will be included in your weekly payment. You do not need to reapply for the Fuel Allowance each year as long as your circumstances remain the same and you continue to get the same social welfare payment.

Know Your Rights has been compiled by Citizens Information Kerry which provides a free and confidential service to the public.

For anyone needing information, advice or have an advocacy issue, you can call a member of the local Citizens Information team in Kerry on 0761 07 7860, they will be happy to assist and make an appointment if necessary. The offices are staffed from Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. Alternatively you can email tralee@citinfo.ie or log on to www.citizensinformation.ie for further information.

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Pedestrianisation poll: Our readers have their say

By Sean Moriarty The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it. A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it.

A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to traffic on a permanent basis while 24.76 want it to go back to its pre-pandemic arrangement where the street was only closed to vehicular traffic between 7pm and 7am each night.

An additional 34.29 percent want to see an increase in pedestrianisation in town centre by extending the Main St arrangement that was in place during the summer. In that period the town’s main thoroughfare was closed to traffic, day and night, during the weekend.

Only 20 percent of the respondents want to abolish pedestrianisation altogether, but that is still a significant number ensuring that this debate will linger on for a long time yet.

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National television exposure for local campaign

By Michelle Crean A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign. Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – […]

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By Michelle Crean

A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign.

Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – invited journalist Paul Byrne and Virgin Media TV crew to town this week.

It’s hoped their campaign will be broadcast tonight (Friday) or tomorrow (Saturday).

The KCRU event takes place tomorrow in ANAM Arts and Cultural Centre between 10.30am and 4pm as part of the European Restart a Heart Day. It’ll include CPR demos, public information, an art display, a video launch w️ith many prizes to be won.

“The crew interviewed Community Responder Helen Duggan who explained the events taking place on Saturday,” Kevin O’Leary from KCRU told the Killarney Advertiser.

“European Restart a Heart Day was founded with the support of the European parliament and takes place on October 16 every year. We’re spreading the message that 20 minutes of your time could make all the difference saving a life.”

In 2021, the focus of the event is on survivors with the hashtag #CPRSavedMyLife.

“With this campaign we want to create awareness that everyone can learn CPR and facilitate BLS courses in schools and public locations.”

He said they hope that Kerry TDs Danny Healy-Rae, Brendan Griffin and Minister for Education Norma Foley will be in attendance throughout the day, and the public are invited to attend.

“Find out how simple actions can save lives. Prizes include a three day First Aid course valued at €300, two First Aid kits, and a voucher for a local business.”

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