Ten priority actions to maximize the opportunity of ageing populations – From UNFPA

The UNFPA report titled “Ageing In the Twenty-First Century – A Celebration and A Challenge”  has listed the top ten priority actions to be taken to maximize the opportunity of ageing populations.  With the Indian 60+ population nearly touching 100 Million, it is time we took this changing scenario seriously and plan for the future.

Here is the list of top ten actions:

1. Recognize the inevitability of population ageing and the need to adequately prepare all stakeholders (governments, civil society, private sector, communities, and families) for the growing numbers of older persons. This should be done by enhancing understanding, strengthening national and local capacities, and developing the political, economic and social reforms needed to adapt societies to an ageing world.

2. Ensure that all older persons can live with dignity and security, enjoying access to essential health and social services and a minimum income through the implementation
of national social protection floors and other social investments that extend the autonomy and independence of older people, prevent impoverishment in old age and contribute to a more healthy ageing. These actions should be based on a long-term vision, and supported by a strong political commitment and a secured budget that prevents negative impacts in time of crisis or governmental changes.

3. Support communities and families to develop support systems which ensure that frail older persons receive the long-term care they need and promote active and healthy ageing at the local level to facilitate ageing in place.

4. Invest in young people today by promoting healthy habits, and ensuring education and employment opportunities, access to health services, and social security coverage for all workers as the best investment to improve the lives of future generations of older persons. Flexible employment, lifelong learning and retraining opportunities should be promoted to facilitate the integration in the labour market of current generations of older persons.

5. Support international and national efforts to develop comparative research on ageing, and ensure that gender- and culture-sensitive data and evidence from this research
are available to inform policymaking.

6. Mainstream ageing into all gender policies and gender into ageing policies, taking into account the specific requirements of older women and men.

7. Ensure inclusion of ageing and the needs of older persons in all national development policies and programmes.

8. Ensure inclusion of ageing and the needs of older persons in national humanitarian response, climate change mitigation and adaptation plans, and disaster management and
preparedness programmes.

9. Ensure that ageing issues are adequately reflected in the post-2015 development agenda, including through the development of specific goals and indicators.

10. Develop a new rights-based culture of ageing and a change of mindset and societal attitudes towards ageing and older persons, from welfare recipients to active, contributing members of society. This requires, among others, working towards the development of international human rights instruments and their translation into national laws and regulations and affirmative measures that challenge age discrimination and recognize older people as autonomous subjects.

You can download the entire report here.


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