Four charities have called on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to appoint a Minister for Older People to end the “scandalous abuse and neglect” of hundreds of thousands of OAPs.
Founder and president of The Silver Line Dame, Esther Rantzen, Age UK, Action on Elder Abuse and Independent Age said a Cabinet appointment was urgently required to represent Britain’s pensioners, according to a report in the newspaper the Express.
The charities said a dedicated ministry to address the numerous issues facing the elderly population would be a start.
In the summer of 2019 the Prime Minister created a new Office for Veterans’ Affairs overseen by two ministers to ensure government delivers lifelong support to those who had served the country.
Dr John Beer, chairman of Action on Elder Abuse, said: “We’ve seen little legislative change. A Minister for Older People would have oversight of all of these issues, and would hold the Government to account. The time to act is now.”
A recent report revealed 2,000 calls for care from pensioners are denied by local councils every day. Around 700,000 requests for formal care and support made by older people in the past year were not dealt with, however, it is believed that up to twice as many in England are not getting the help they need.
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director of Age UK said: “Older people’s lives are affected by decisions made in almost every Government Department, but there is no one Minister or group of civil servants dedicated to ensuring their needs are understood and Government policy is framed with them in mind.
“From bank branch closures to the parlous state of social care, there’s plenty of evidence of Government being tone deaf to the reality of older people’s lives.
“It’s high time this changed and the Government took action to ensure older people’s needs and interests are better represented and understood within how Whitehall works.”