AGE open letter to the 9th Round Table on Poverty and Social Exclusion
PRESS RELEASE Brussels, 14 October 2010
9th Round Table on Poverty and Social Exclusion
‘Guarantee an adequate social protection to protect the most vulnerable old people, including older women’
On the eve of the 9th Round Table on Poverty and Social Inclusion on 18-19 October 2010, AGE sent an open letter to EU Ministries of Employment, social Affairs and Health calling on governments to address the growing risks of poverty and social exclusion among an increasing number of older citizens today. With the 2010 European Year on Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion approaching its end “a firm commitment from member states to protect the most vulnerable groups, including older people, against the consequences of the crisis is indispensable. In particular, we would like governments to clarify how the Europe 2020 Strategy will deliver on its social objectives.”, said Anne-Sophie Parent, AGE Director.
The proposed Flagship Initiative for the European Platform against Poverty should strengthen the adequacy and sustainability of our pensions systems and guarantee access to quality health and long-term care for all. “Major reforms are being introduced in these areas in many member states, yet policy makers seem to fail to understand the impact that such measures will have on older people's daily lives”. AGE urges governments in particular to combat gender inequality by assessing and addressing the impact that their pension reforms will have on women who have to reconcile professional career with family responsibilities.
The Open Method of Coordination on social protection and social inclusion should be further reinforced in order to help member states manage the social consequences of the crisis and assess the impact of the ongoing reforms on older people’s lives. “Innovative tools, such as budget standards for an adequate income at all ages – based on a basket of goods and services that evolves according to the needs of the different age groups – will be also essential to address effectively specific needs people may have along their lives”, concluded Anne-Sophie Parent.
AGE open letter is available at: http://www.age-platform.eu/images/stories/EN/CoverAGE/EN/AGE_Open_Letter_to_9th_RT.pdf
Link to the Round Table event: http://www.eutrio.be/ninth-round-table-poverty-and-social-exclusion