Key Quotes - The Elderly

Key Quotes - The Elderly

A world perspective in bite-size chunks
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Last update: Wednesday 30th July
 
Swiss assisted suicide group Exit says it will consider helping elderly people who do not have a terminal illness to kill themselves, it was reported in late May. Exit’s General Assembly backed the change in a vote, prompting warnings from a Swiss medical group that it could put pressure on healthy older people to commit suicide. The change means elderly people would not need to provide as much proof of an illness as younger people.
The ElderlyEvangelicals Now, July 2014
 
Reform of pensions is at the heart of the Government legislative programme for the coming year in a Queen’s Speech which also offered a limited right for voters to recall misbehaving MPs, support for ‘fracking’ to produce shale gas, and measures to help small businesses. Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg hailed the programme for the coalition’s final year as ‘unashamedly pro-work, pro-business and pro-aspiration’. Heavily-trailed reforms abolishing the requirement for pensioners to buy annuities and allowing workers to join Dutch-style collective pension schemes would deliver the biggest transformation in provision for the elderly since the inception of the system, they said.
The ElderlyThe Sentinel, June 5, 2014
 
As many as 100,000 workers each year are facing a poverty-stricken retirement as they will have only the state pension to live on, worrying new figures reveal. Despite a lifetime of work, 14 per cent of the 750,000 people who reach state pension age in 2014 have no private pension or other savings to boost their income in old age. But the basic state pension of £113.10 a week amounts to just £6,000 a year to pay bills, warns a report by pension giant Prudential. Even those who have saved will not have enough put by to ensure a comfortable retirement – with a fifth not reaching the minimum income standard of £8,600 for a single pensioner and £12,500 for a couple. Women are nearly three times more likely to rely on the state pension than men, the report found.
The ElderlyDaily Express, April 9 2014
 
Millions of pensioners are more worried about how they will heat their homes than falling ill this winter, new research reveals. The over-65s list heating as one of their biggest outgoings, with many expecting to receive a bill they can’t afford even after “rationing” the rooms they keep warm. The study, conducted by Home-Serve, found that one in five are worrying about heating costs as temperatures start to plunge. Official figures show there were 31,100 excess deaths, mainly among the elderly, last winter. But pensioners’ fears about soaring bills for keeping warm even outweigh the risk of falling ill due to cold or being isolated by bad weather. A half said their heating costs were now rising faster than their pensions.
The ElderlyDaily Express, December 4 2013
 
Talking cash machines are now being installed across North Staffordshire to help blind or partially sighted customers. The Co-operative Bank yesterday unveiled the machines at its Britannia branch in Biddulph and food store in Milton. Bucknall, Bentilee, Baddeley Green and Uttoxeter will benefit from the equipment next month. The bank is the first to launch talking ATMs coupled with high contrast screens for blind and partially-sighted customers. There are now 53 in Stoke-on-Trent, with more than 1,000 planned nationally by the end of 2013, and a further 1,000 planned for 2014.
The ElderlyThe Sentinel – June 28, 2013
 
A grandmother who killed herself left a note blaming the government for her death. Stephanie Bottrill’s family said she was tortured about how she would afford the £20 extra a week for the two spare bedrooms in her home - money she owed because of the government’s spare room subsidy policy, the so-called “bedroom tax”, the Sunday People reported. Ms Brottrill, from Solihull, died in the early hours of May 4 after she was struck by a lorry on the M6 motorway, which is a short walk from her terraced house.
The ElderlyThe Sentinel – May 13, 2013
 
One of Britain's biggest debt charities warned yesterday of a crisis among the over-60s, with record numbers facing insolvency. The organisation dealt with unprecedented numbers in this age group last year, with the total up nearly 40 per cent since the recession began. Over-60s typically have larger debts than any other age group, owing on average £23,000, while the typical debts of the rest of those contacting the charity Step Change are around £17,650. To make matters worse this only includes unsecured debts such as credit cards, overdrafts, personal loans and payday loans. For those who have a mortgage, classed as a secured debt, the total burden is even larger. Step Change, which offers counselling and debt management advice, said 13,148 people aged 60 and over, equal to around 36 a day, sought help last year, compared with 9,628 in 2009.
The ElderlyDaily Mail 09.05.2013
 
Elderly people who have contributed to society should be "rewarded in retirement" David Cameron and Nick Clegg said yesterday, but campaigners warned pensioners to check the "fine print". Pensioners will receive a new flat-rate allowance to be worth £155 a week from 2016 under a new Pensions Bill.
The Care Bill, to be published within days, promises to protect the elderly and disabled from potentially"catastrophic" costs of personal care that force 40,000 people to sell their homes each year….The legislation, to be published later this year, will increase the state retirement age to 67 between 2026 and 2028, followed by increases linked to life expectancy. This means young workers today may not retire until their 70s.
The ElderlyDaily Telegraph 09.05.2013
 
Soaring numbers of elderly people are being forced to rely on handouts from friends and family to stay in care homes near their loved ones. Councils facing squeezed budgets are increasingly looking to move residents to cheaper homes, which often means they are passed 'like parcels' to alternatives hundreds of miles away. A third of those who are entitled to state help with care home fees - perhaps because they have exhausted their life savings on such bills - are being forced to meet spiralling costs themselves, charity Age UK said. If they fail to top up their council funding, care home residents can be moved to cheaper homes - potentially in a different local authority - where their fees can be paid by the council in full. Elderly people living in England qualify to have all their care home fees covered by their local authority when their assets drop below £14,250, and if their needs are severe enough. According to the figures, 56,000 elderly people - nearly a third of those entitled to have their care home fees paid in full last year - were forced to turn to relatives for help with topping up care home bills - a 4 per cent jump on the previous year.
The ElderlyDaily Mail April 9 2013
 
Hundreds of thousands more Britons are to benefit from a new £155-a-week flat rate pension and accelerated reforms to the elderly care funding system. Around 400,000 people approaching retirement will receive more generous payments when they stop work. The Chancellor will also cut a proposed cap on social care costs from £75,000 to £72,000 - the amount after which the state will step in to prevent elderly people having to sell their homes.
It will come into effect a year early in 2016.
The ElderlyDaily Mail 18 March 2013
 
Pensioner Don Evans has accused an animal rescue charity of ageism – after he was refused permission to adopt a dog. The respected 71-year-old, who was made an MBE for services to the community, wanted to look after an abandoned lurcher. But he was left angry and disappointed after the Animal Lifeline organisation in Longton, Stoke-on-Trent refused permission – claiming Don would not be able to offer the pet ‘at least 10 years of active life’.
The ElderlyThe Sentinel, December 17, 2012
 
Out of two million older people in England with care-related needs, 800,000 receive no support from public or private-sector agencies. Spending cuts mean that this number may reach the one million mark between 2012 and 2014. Today, about 420,000 older people live in residential homes, a figure set to rise to 1.5 million in 2030. Yet some local authorities have cut costs by closing their own care homes, and privately run homes are beset by money problems.
The ElderlyThird Way, December 2012
 
It’s been said, somewhat optimistically, that life begins at 40. Now it seems a more accurate adage might read: Mid-life begins at 40. Or to be precise, according to a study, which reveals general attitudes to youth and ageing, the age at which we should stop calling ourselves young is 40 years, eight months and two weeks. And, rather worryingly, the Britons surveyed reckon old age begins when people reach the age of 59 years, two months and two weeks….The gap may be down to men placing more emphasis on diminishing strength as a mark of ageing, or because women tend to live longer….The Department for Work and Pensions said 'the disparity in perceptions' showed 'the potential for age stereotypes to be applied in very inconsistent ways'.
The ElderlyDaily Mail Jan 1 2013
 
Wealthy pensioners should be stripped of universal benefits such as free bus passes and winter fuel payments before the next election, Nick Clegg suggested last night. The Deputy Prime Minister indicated he was considering scrapping the handouts as part of the coalition’s final spending review. Earlier Treasury Chief Secretary Danny Alexander launched a crackdown on tax-dodgers, claiming up to £3 billion could be brought in by targeting Britons who stash their money in Liechtenstein.
The ElderlyThe Sentinel – 26th September 2012
 
More than a third of men over 75 confess to feeling lonely, according to research. 36% who live alone are unhappy and spend more than 12 hours a day on their own. They are more likely to be lonely than women, but are much less likely to confide in friends and family about their feelings. The findings, by the age charity WRVS, also highlight how elderly men are socially isolated, with 41% typically having two or fewer face-to-face conversations a day and 3% having none at all. The research suggests up to 200,000 men over 75 battle loneliness. This is widely considered to be a serious health issue for older people, as those living a solitary life are more likely to become ill and need hospital care. Worryingly, although 54% of the lonely men admit to feeling depressed, 75% have never sought help. The main cause of loneliness for older men was the death of a partner (62%), followed by losing companions their own age (54%). However, 85% of the lonely men said they felt better after seeing friends or family. More than one In five – 21% - said they didn't leave the house for days and 9% said they no longer ate properly. One in eight also said they worried about their mental health because they had no one to talk to.
The ElderlyThe Daily Mail July 26 2012
 
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