28 September 2016
15.00 – 17.00
The human rights of all individuals in Europe, including older persons, are protected in various binding international and regional human rights conventions. However, international human rights conventions do not specifically address age discrimination or refer to older persons. Regional human rights laws also do not protect older persons’ rights systematically or comprehensively.
In 2010, the United Nations General Assembly established an Open-Ended Working Group to identify possible gaps in the existing international framework of the human rights of older persons and how best to address them, including exploring the possibility of a new international convention on the rights of older persons.
Political support for a new Convention is growing, although the EU is still formally opposed to this. The UN Independent Expert on the rights of older persons recently called on states to ‘to step up their efforts to determine the best way to strengthen the protection of the human rights of older persons and to consider the various proposals that have been made, notably the elaboration of a convention on the rights of older persons’.
This event will open an EU dialogue and offer an update on recent developments at the UN Open Ended Working Group and its impact on European Member States and older persons in Europe.
15.00 – 15.05 Welcome and introduction, Lambert van Nistelrooij, MEP from the EPP Group, Coordinator of the Intergroup’s subgroup on Active Ageing, European Parliament
15.05 – 15.20 Setting the scene: UN discussions around a new Convention on the rights of older persons, Bridget Sleap, Senior Rights Advisor, HelpAge International
15.20 – 15.30 UN Convention on the rights of older persons: the view of older persons in Europe, Anne-Sophie Parent, Secretary General, AGE Platform Europe
15.30 – 15.40 Older persons’ human rights in long term care: lessons learnt from monitoring in six European countries, Lora Vidovic, Croatian Ombudswoman, Chair of ENNHRI
15.40 – 15.50 UN Convention on the rights of older persons: the view of an EU Member State, Darja Bavdaž Kuret, State Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia
15.50 – 16.00 UN Convention on the rights of older persons: reaction from the EU Presidency, Peter Javorčík, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of the Slovak Republic to the EU (tbc)
16.00 – 16.10 UN Convention on the rights of older persons: reactions from the European Commission, Johan ten Geuzendam, Advisor— Directorate D. Equality. DG Justice and Consumers
16.10 – 16.30 Debate with the audience
16.30 – 16.55 Reaction from MEPs
• Sirpa Pietikainen, MEP from the EPP Group, Vice-President of the Intergroup on Active Ageing, European Parliament
• Ivo Vaigl, MEP from the ALDE Group, Vice-President of the Intergroup on Active Ageing, European Parliament
• Jean Lambert, MEP from the Greens, Vice-President of the Intergroup on Active Ageing, European Parliament
16.55 – 17.00 Closing remarks, Lambert van Nistelrooij, MEP from the EPP Group, Coordinator of the Intergroup’s subgroup on Active Ageing, European Parliament