Bank of Ireland's vulnerable customer unit deals with 400 customers in last month

Bank of Ireland's vulnerable customer unit deals with 400 customers in last month

Bank of Ireland has said it has dealt with more than 400 cases involving vulnerable customers in the past month.

It said a dedicated unit is being set up to train staff across the country to deal with an increasing demand.

The bank said it will mean a greater level of supports for people with age-related or cognitive impairment, who face financial abuse or suffer with illness or addiction.

According to the most recent Central Statistics Office (CSO) census, there are 643,000 people with a disability in Ireland.

A report prepared by the Department of Health shows that the number of people over-65 is increasing by over 20,000 a year - with 673,000 people over 65 as of 2018, an increase of 35% since 2009.

Laura Lynch from Bank of Ireland explained how people can access the service.

Ms Lynch said: "The customer can either get referred to the vulnerable customer unit for guidance, the branch can deal with them directly for support from the unit or some of the advocacy groups we've worked with [can refer people], who've worked with our customers indirectly.

"We've worked with some of the best groups in Ireland to develop this support structure and the unit."

The new VCU is based in Co. Carlow and staffed by eight specialists with experience in retail and community banking, fraud and financial crime.

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