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Message of President Dirk Jarré
The European Federation of Older Persons – EURAG – created in 1962, is the oldest European civil society organisation of and for older persons, with membership in 30 European countries. It is a non-profit association, independent of any political parties, with the purpose to promote the recognition, the quality of life and the participation of older persons in society at all social, economic and political levels.
In its last 3 videoconference meetings – EURAG members from 18-24 countries have shared with each other their experiences during the Corona pandemic, and what they have learned from it. Among others, they have highlighted the following issues:
- The need to call on politicians to set up, at European level, directives on the subject of coordinated public health measures (addressing physical and mental well-being) and to mobilize the financial means necessary to implement up to date solutions in the area of health and care services, in particular for persons in need of care, support and assistance. It is obvious that individual European countries cannot solve these health problems on their own!
- Put a stop to considering and treating older persons as a homogeneous category of people over the age of 50. They are as diverse and have very different needs and capacities as any other population group. Consequently, policies addressing the situation of older persons must seriously take their specificities into consideration.
- Put a stop to the confusion between social distancing and physical distancing. While physical distancing is a measure to prevent the spreading of virus infections, social distancing necessarily leads to isolation, marginalisation and, at the worst, to disruption of social cohesion.
- Any economic stimulus emerging from lockdown must include resources and measures to develop conditions to encourage and enable older persons to play their just role in formal paid /click title to continue/