Gerry Calder, Chair of Future East was invited to attend the launch of “Ageing: The Silver Lining – a report on the challenges and opportunities of an ageing population for local government” by the LGA Task and Finish Group on Ageing, hosted on behalf of the Local Government Association by Baroness Greengross at the House of Commons on Wednesday 24th June.
The scale of demographic change over the next 25 years is dramatic and has never been seen on this scale before. For the first time in history older people will outnumber the number of children under 5 years old.
The report highlights the increasing contribution an older population could make to society and the economy through empowered local government and challenges the commonly held belief that an ageing population is a burden.
Gerry added it is always good to see the outcomes of partnership working.
By speaking up for their age, the reflected voices of older people in the East of England have helped shape this important report.
I am honoured to be their chosen elected representative, on Future East the regional forum on ageing which gives me higher place to convey the fact that older people make a huge contribution to the life of their local areas through providing unpaid care, involvement in civic organisations and other forms of volunteering as well as forming the core of many valued social meeting groups.
These help combat loneliness and isolation, But there is still much more to be done, there is still the need to continue to tackle age discrimination and negative attitudes towards older people across society and the media.
Being able to fly the flag for Future East on these issues is thanks to the working in partnership of the East of England Older Peoples elected representatives and other statuary services without whose support and involvement older people’s voices would be much diminished. Our many thanks to them. They do this despite the Central Government budget cuts having left them of the edge of the precipice and struggling to make ends meet, they recognise the importance of nurturing and supporting older peoples input.
Future East will continue to work in partnerships towards highlighting the necessity for a new and improved financial settlement for local government as there is widespread agreement that the financing of social care is completely inadequate and that there is also a need for further resources for the NHS.
A new and integrated financial settlement in these areas is crucial with a ageing society.
A copy of the full report can be downloaded here