Elderly couple take council to court over domestic help stop

Elderly lady during ironingAn elderly couple in Groningen are taking their local council to court because it will no longer subsidise seven hours of domestic help for them.

The couple, aged 88 and 89, have been told they will no longer qualify for help from January 1 when government spending cuts of 28% come into effect.

The umbrella group which provides domestic help to the couple points out that councils cannot simply stop providing the service because of the financial implications. ‘This is unacceptable,’ Iederin director Illya Soffer told broadcaster Nos.

Soffer says around 100 of the country’s 400 local authority areas have said they are to stop funding domestic help. These include villages and major centres of population such as Groningen, Apeldoorn and Wageningen.

The couple’s lawyer Matthijs Vermaat said the case may set a precedent. ‘If the judge says the council cannot simply stop domestic help it could apply to everyone in a similar situation,’ he is quoted as saying by the Nos.

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