We must shift our narratives around older persons – moving away from an ageist, paternalistic view to one anchored in full respect for the equal rights and dignity of people of all ages.  Older people are as diverse as any other population. Assuming that they are necessarily frail and dependent is not only inaccurate, it is harmful to all of society.”  Michelle BACHELET, High Commissioner for Human Rights, 1st October 2020    

Sign an Open Letter on the Rights of Older Persons

We would like to invite you as civil society organisations to sign an Open Letter on the Rights of Older Persons urging UN member states to take action and commence the drafting of a new UN convention on the rights of older persons. Click for more information...

Decade of Healthy ageing 2021-2030

On 14 December 2020, The United Nations General Assembly declared 2021-2030 the Decade of Healthy Ageing.

“Today’s announcement of the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing sends a clear signal that it is only by working as one, within the United Nations system and with governments, civil society and the private sector, that we will be able to not only add years to life, but also life to years,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization, in response to today’s development.

Global report on ageism

The Global report on ageism outlines a framework for action to reduce ageism including specific recommendations for different actors (e.g. government, UN agencies, civil society organizations, private sector). It brings together the best available evidence on the nature and magnitude of ageism, its determinants and its impact. It outlines what strategies work to prevent and counter ageism, identifies gaps and proposes future lines of research to improve our understanding of ageism.

In Focus

First substantive resolution on the human rights of older persons with a focus on ageism and age discrimination was adopted by consensus by Members States at the 48th session of the Human Rights Council.

The text of the resolution HRC/48/3 can be found in the six UN official languages here.

Letter to the Executive Director of UN WOMEN from the NGO Committees on Ageing

Dear Under-Secretary General and Executive Director Bahous,

We would like to express our congratulations and best wishes on your new appointment as Executive Director of UN Women.

We appreciate your letter to civil society, recognizing and acknowledging the critical role it plays in supporting gender equality and the important work of UN Women. We, in turn, appreciate your continued commitment to collaborating with civil society in our common endeavours. We are, at the same time, extremely concerned that you have omitted to specifically mention older women and we call your urgent attention to the issues we are raising below.

UN75: Shaping our Future Together

Listening to people’s priorities and expectations of international cooperation

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres saw the UN’ 75th anniversary as an opportunity for the Organisation to listen directly to the people it serves. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, the world faced a growing list of global challenges: from tsahe climate crisis and environmental degradation to nuclear weapons, deepening inequalities, rapid changes in our populations, the transformative impact of new technologies and new forms and patterns of violence.

In January 2020, the UN launched a yearlong, global initiative to listen to people’s priorities and expectations of international cooperation. Through surveys and dialogues, more than 1.5 million people from all walks of life shared their hopes and fears for the future, and discussed how all actors, including the UN, can innovate and work together to better to address the global challenges we face. Read More…

The Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older people- Ms. Claudia Mahler

Ms. Claudia Mahler (Austria) has been working for the German Institute for Human Rights as a senior researcher in the field of economic, social and cultural rights since 2010. She is also a visiting professor at the Alice Salomon Hochschule. From 2001 to 2009, Ms. Mahler conducted research at the Human Rights Centre of the University of Potsdam where her main fields were in human rights education, minority rights and the law of asylum. In 2000, she was appointed as Vice President of the Human Rights Commission for Tyrol and Vorarlberg. She has also worked as a lecturer in the field of human rights law and as a consultant to OHCHR in Geneva. From 1997-2001, she held the position of an assistant at the Leopold-Franzens-University Innsbruck, Austria in the field of Criminal Law and Criminal Procedures. Ms. Mahler received her doctoral degree in 2000. Read more…

The Open-ended Working Group on Ageing (OEWG)

The OEWG is a UN working group that meets in New York. It was established by a resolution at the 2010 General Assembly. Read the resolution A/RES/65/182. Since the establishment of this working group,  every year a session has been held. Read more…

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