Key asks in their manifesto include a Commissioner for Older People, reform of social care, and action on poverty, loneliness and housing.
ALLIANCE member Age Scotland have published their manifesto for the 2021 Scottish Parliament election, titled “Action for Older People” (this link will take you away from our website). It outlines key policies they believe will help Scotland’s older people, with those over 50 now making up 40% of the population.
According to Age Scotland, there are a range of issues that specifically impact older people. These include:
- Poverty, as 150,000 pensioners are estimated to live in relative poverty
- Loneliness, as 200,000 older people go at least a week without seeing or hearing from anyone, and 100,000 report feeling lonely most or all of the time
- Digital exclusion, as half of over 60’s don’t use the internet
- Gender inequality, as the pension wealth of women is 40% below that of men
- Care, as 80,000 older people receive social care support.
Amongst the key policies that Age Scotland are putting forward to address these issues is a Scottish Commissioner for Older People, who would act as a national voice for older people and hold public bodies to account. In our own “Equally Valued” manifesto for 2021, the ALLIANCE have made a similar call for an older people’s commissioner to advance and protect older people’s rights.
The other policies spotlighted in the Age Scotland manifesto are to reform social care and establish a National Care Service; tackle loneliness and social isolation; end pensioner poverty; and build more accessible, energy efficient homes suitable for older people.