3 Dec 2012

Court upholds finding on elderly disabled

11:34 pm on 3 December 2012

A Human Rights Review tribunal finding that the Health Ministry discriminated against intellectually disabled people aged over 65 by not funding their community activities has been upheld by the High Court.

The decision, released on Monday, arises from an appeal hearing in Wellington earlier this year.

The Ministry of Social Development had paid for community activities for some of those who were eligible, but when they turned 65 and transferred to National Superannuation it no longer funded them.

In 2005 the Health Ministry decided it would also stop funding those people when they turned 65 and stopped receiving funding from the Social Development Ministry.

In its decision, the High Court ruled the need to cut costs didn't justify discrimination based on age.

The court has, however, reduced the costs the tribunal awarded to IDEA Services, formerly the IHC, from $165,000 to $115,000.