Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has said promoting the wellbeing of older people and ensuring they can enjoy life to the fullest must remain a priority.
Today marks the 31st UN International Day of Older Persons and the beginning of Positive Ageing Month.
The Minister said:
“Promoting the wellbeing of older people and ensuring they can enjoy later life to the fullest is a priority for my Department. People here are living longer than ever and our older citizens make a significant contribution to society, whether that be volunteering, continuing to work or providing childcare. They have also shown fortitude and determination in overcoming the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“My Department continues work to create an age friendly community in which people, as they grow older, are valued and supported to live actively to their fullest potential, with their rights respected and with dignity protected. This includes appropriate housing to meet the needs of our ageing population, financial support to pay heating fuel expenses over the colder months and access to advice service to ensure individuals are receiving the support they are entitled to.”
Linda Robinson, Chief Executive of Age NI said,
“We welcome the commitment by the Minister to ensure older people live well and enjoy later life. Age NI’s Lived Experience Report 2021 has identified the issues that matter most to older people and outlined a clear agenda for action for policy and decision makers. We look forward to working with the Minister and her Department on bringing about changes that will really make a difference to the everyday lives of older people, and not just for today, International Day for Older People.
“We know that older people want to play their part in local communities, and they are keen to be engaged and listened to when it comes to planning a better future for all of us as we age.
“With a larger proportion of older people in our society than ever before, the time is right to ensure Northern Ireland has fully age-inclusive services right across the board. We can all benefit from living in age friendly communities, where people are welcomed, get the extra help they need and are connected to the things that matter to them.”
Notes to editors:
- The current Active Ageing Strategy
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