eradicating older people stereotypes.
Speaking at the UN Assembly on Ageing in Madrid, pension minister Ian McCartney
'It is over 20 years since the world last got together to discuss age
issues. Time for words is over - it is action that will now count. So
I am delighted that we are moving the age agenda forward.
'The UK government is planning to take an active role over the next
few days in finding the best way forward for how we internationally
will tackle the challenges of an increasing older population.
'The British government has not stood still. We have ploughed ahead
with a whole raft of actions and worked with older people to make a
real difference to their lives.
'Today I pledge that we will continue to work at breaking down the
stereotypical attitude towards older people and fight ageism.
'I have two main goals. I hope that in the next 20 years:
- there will be opportunities for all citizens - young and old alike
- there will be an end to discrimination against older people in
employment and access to other public services.
'Older people are not the world's problem they are part of the
solution to the world's problems.'
Mr McCartney continued:
'Ageism is wrong and the time has come to bin it.
'Life truly begins at 50. And I should know now that as at the age of
50 I have become a grandfather for the 8th time last weekend.'
The UK's programme of activities to combat ageism includes:
- The Age Positive Campaign and New Deal 50 Plus that encourage age
diversity in the workplace and reintegrate older workers into the
- Better Government for Older People with its emphasis on working in
partnership with older people to deliver more pension-centred
services and sharing best practice
- The National Service Framework focuses specifically on improving
health and care for the over 50s and promoting independence
- The Experience Corps that promotes active ageing through community
In order to help tackle ageism the government has set up a
cabinet committee on older people. It covers a huge number of
issues that concern older people including increasing the economic
activity of older workers, combating negative stereotypes,
promoting healthy living and active lifestyles.