Europe’s Recovery Building the future of fair and resilient societies – including all generations

On the 27th of July, the ESU Presidium met online and discussed the ESU resolution “Europe’s Recovery; Building the future of fair and resilient societies – including all generations” A first draft of this resolution was already sent to the members of the Executive Committee on the 3th of July and presented during the videoconference of the 4th of July by Secretary General Guido Dumon.

Amendments to this resolution could be submitted by the 25th of July. The ESU wants to submit this document in the EPP Political Assembly of September. In the video meeting of 27th July a discussion on the amendments was held under the fluent guidance of ESU Vice-President Heinz Becker. It was an interactive meeting where the proposed amendments were discussed with respect for everyone’s opinion and sequentially incorporated in the final text. This resolution is our core document for drawing attention -in particular through the EPP- to policy aspects that concern seniors in Europe’s Recovery Strategy.

In its resolution the ESU calls the EU to implement the lessons learned during COVID-19 and to play an effective and visual role in leading the Common Strategy, addressing challenges in different areas and giving citizens the confidence that the EU, the national & regional governments and the stakeholders at all levels are working effectively together. Thereby addressing demographic change is key to building a fairer and more resilient society.

The ESU urges that older persons’ human rights must be protected on an equal basis with others; advanced age should never by itself be a criterion for excluding persons from specialised care. Fighting discrimination and abuse of older persons involves fighting ageism as a structural factor of stereotyping. Adapted social support and smart efforts to reach older persons could -and can– help older persons to maintain the feeling of ‘being part of a community’.

We must entrust the EU with the development of Europe wide pandemic-concepts and support the member states to strengthen their systems in the field of public health. Taking into account the challenge of a growing demand for sufficient, accessible, good quality and affordable health and long-term care services as enshrined in the European Pillar of Social Rights. Our societies need health; social and long-term care systems that provide individualised support to older persons, while promoting their full inclusion in the community. Therefore, we call for the integration of long-term care in the Social Scoreboard indicators, feeding into the preparation of the Country Reports in the context of the European Semester. It complements the more qualitative assessment of economic and social challenges across the EU.

All generations count the same and must be heard in the upcoming process of European recovery. Therefore we recommend that all social, economic and humanitarian responses must take the needs of seniors fully into account, initiatives for healthy ageing and life-long learning including digital skills in all age groups need to be boosted and rural depopulation combined with an ageing population require ambitious investments to attract the youth, create jobs and make rural areas vibrant while also developing adapted services for all generations. Seniors are and want to be part of all areas of society. The crisis has highlighted, again, the power and importance of solidarity. “Life time healthy ageing” concerns all generations.

Please find the full resolution here:

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Events in 2020

Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing?

International

On the 1st of October, we are celebrating the International Day of Older Persons for the 30th time worldwide.

ESU in times of the COVID-19 pandemic

Brussels

To keep in touch during the COVID-19 pandemic, the ESU relied on a variety of media.

The European Day of Solidarity between Generations

Brussels - Europe

Letter from Prof. Em. An Hermans, President of the European Seniors’ Union

Seniors exploring the future of Europe

Prague - Czech Republic

The European Seniors’ Union (ESU) held its first meetings of 2020 in Prague from 5 to 7 March.