Elderly 'afraid of going out at night' across Limerick communities after murder

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

Chairperson Oliver Creighton with members of Limerick Seniors Forum Picture: Brian Arthur

Chairperson Oliver Creighton with members of Limerick Seniors Forum Picture: Brian Arthur

THE CHAIRPERSON of the Limerick Senior Forum has called on the Government to “stop pussyfooting with senior people’s lives and wellbeing” following the horrific death of Rose Hanrahan.

Raheen man Oliver Creighton, 81, has described the actions of the killer or killers as “mindless” and that elderly people in Limerick are now more worried than ever at home.

“We have been highlighting the loneliness of the seniors for a long time. And even in communities where you are surrounded by people, elderly people are still at risk.

“We used to think that these things would only happen in the country, but now it is happening in the city where there are a lot of people.

“I always have been worried, but this makes me more worried. I live on my own in an apartment. And this was such a cruel way to die. People are not even answering their doors now, they are so afraid to answer their doors,” he said. 

Mr Creighton is calling on the Government to appoint a ministerial role with a specific responsibility for older people.

“It is about time now that the Government stopped pussyfooting with senior people’s lives and wellbeing,” he said, adding that elderly people are “afraid to go out at night”.

On Sunday, crime prevention officer Sgt Ber Leetch attended the St Munchin’s Christmas party to advise the local elderly about security over the festive season.

She advised them to watch out for each other, lock all doors, use alarms if they have one, and not to open their door unless they know who it is.

“If you feel alarmed, ring the gardai, I have noticed a reluctance on the part of some elderly people to contact gardai in case they were wasting their time, I would say just ring the gardai and then ring a trusted neighbour, of course make sure to have your friends number easy to find or saved on your phone.”

Sgt Leetch also suggested that an alert bracelet would be a “fantastic Christmas present as it would give great peace of mind to anybody living alone both for their safety and for their security”.