Research Abstracts: Age discrimination

Title: Social inclusion and older people: a call for action
Author: Sinclair, David; Swan, Amy; Pearson, Anna;
Publisher: London: Help the Aged, 2007. 51p

Abstract: Nearly three quarters of adults in the UK (73%) agree age discrimination exists in the everyday lives of older people. The report is based on feedback from older people collated in workshops held in six locations during 2006.

Title: Age of equality? Outlawing age discrimination beyond the workplace
Author: Age Concern 
Publisher: London: Age Concern, 2007. 43p

Abstract: The Age Concern report outlines the potential importance and impact of age discrimination protection – especially for the most vulnerable older people. It calls for public authorities, such as local and national government and the NHS, to be placed under a legal duty to promote age equality in every aspect of their work. Existing forms of discrimination mean that anyone over 65 with mental health needs is not included in mainstream services, and so receives less funding and reduced services. Despite experience of ageism being three times more common than any form of discrimination older people can also legally lose out on important goods and services simply because of the date on their birth certificates. The report calls for lighttouch protection against unjust discrimination in goods and services. Discrimination is pervasive in the lives of older people: insurance, car hire and financial products are often denied to older people, or exorbitant must be paid to procure these services.

Title: Big brother or brave new world? Telecare and its implications for older people’s independence and social inclusion.
Author: Percival, John; Hanson, Julienne
Reference: Critical Social Policy, 26(4), November 2006, pp888-909

Abstract: Telecare is advocated as a means of effectively and economically delivering health and social care services in people’s homes, using technology that can monitor activities and safety, provide virtual home visiting, activate reminder systems, increase home security and convey information. Significant planned investment by central government will be rewarded if telecare results in fewer older people requiring institutional care, and more remaining independent in their own homes longer than would otherwise be the case. This paper, which reports on focus group work with older people, carers and professional stakeholders, considers key issues rarely addressed in provider-led studies. Emerging social policy implications centre on the potential impact of telecare on service users’ autonomy and privacy and, controversially, as a replacement for human support. It is argued that the development of relevant policy and practice in respect of telecare has to pay close and careful attention to concerns held by all stakeholders, particularly in regard to individual choice, surveillance, risk-taking and quality of service.

Title: Sure Start services for older people.
Author: Hollywood, Michele
Reference: Working with Older People, 10(3), September 2006, pp31-33

Abstract: The government has announced an ideal to adapt and develop the Sure Start model for children to cater for socially excluded older people. The author examines sheltered housing’s contribution towards this new service development and how it may benefit all older people, not just the vulnerable.



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