ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has today expressed concern over Bank of Ireland’s announcement that they are going to ban withdrawals of under €700 with the aid of tellers.
CEO of ALONE, Sean Moynihan said, “If implemented, this measure will seriously impact older people, many of whom rely on tellers at financial institutions to carry out their day to day banking needs. Many of the older people we work with don’t have ATM cards and need to carry out their banking in branch. Research in 2011 showed that only 11% of 65-74 year olds in Ireland were using the internet for online banking – to throw this change onto older people will cause huge problems.”
Moynihan continued, “Many older people won’t be able to adapt to using ATMs and as a result may end up with large amounts of cash in their home making them more vulnerable to burglary. Older persons on the government pension will have to save up for three weeks and then make a bulk withdrawal if they wish to take money out with a teller.
Moynihan concluded, “Physical issues such as poor eyesight, tremors in hands and difficulty with mobility can make withdrawing money from an ATM more difficult. Older persons can also feel very exposed standing at an ATM, particularly if it is outside. For an isolated older person, the interactions they have with staff at their local branch are a valued part of their routine so we would implore Bank of Ireland to reconsider this decision.”