World Elderly Day: why you should take care of yourself
Every year on June 15, the world celebrates Older Persons' Day, or World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Learn more about the event and how to ensure that older people get the help they need
On June 15, the world celebrates the Day of Protection of Older Persons. The event was introduced by the UN General Assembly in 2011.
What is this event and how did the idea to celebrate the Day of Protection of Older Persons come about? Let us tell you more.
What is this event?
The full name is World Day to Raise Awareness of Elder Abuse. This day aims to draw the world's attention to the vulnerability of older people and abuse against them and to ensure that this category of citizens enjoys their rights and freedoms on an equal footing with all members of society.
Older people are often discriminated against on the basis of their age, but we should not forget that it is thanks to them that we have our lives and well-being. Unlike everyone else, the elderly who have vast life and professional experience.
Who are the elderly?
The World Health Organization has developed a special classification of elderly people, according to which citizens aged 60-74 are called elderly, 75-89 are called old, and people whose age has jumped the 90-year mark are considered long-livers.
In society, however, it is customary to classify those who have retired as elderly. However, this is a very general indicator, as men retire later than women. In addition, retirement ages vary significantly from country to country.
How many elderly people are there in the world and in Ukraine?
According to estimates, by 2050, the number of elderly people on the planet will be about 20%. These figures will be highest in developing countries.
Currently, there are more than 11,000,000 people of retirement age in Ukraine.
Discrimination and abuse of older people
Statistics show that every sixth elderly person is mistreated by relatives, friends, neighbors or strangers.
Old age often brings with it a change in the usual standards of living, illness, and severe emotional distress. Retirement leaves people outside of social processes, and it is difficult for them to adapt to the constantly changing conditions of society. Such people are often discriminated against on the basis of their age, fall below the poverty line, and are subject to abuse.
Often, the reason for age discrimination against older people is the widespread public disdain for them due to alleged age-related brain disorders and the alleged inability to engage in active labor or social activities.
The most common form of elder abuse is financial exploitation and extortion. In about 90% of cases of abuse and neglect of older people, the perpetrator is a family member.
The coronavirus epidemic and the war have significantly worsened the quality of life of older people. In addition to threats to their lives and safety, older people are subjected to social humiliation and deprived of necessary medical care, freedom of movement, decent work, and subsidized payments.
Medical care and decent treatment are important for the elderly, as early diagnosis of diseases and their proper treatment have a positive impact on the quality of life of this category of citizens. Health insurance can provide elderly people with the necessary assistance and prolong their lives.
This day is a symbol of intergenerational unity and a great opportunity to say warm words of gratitude to fathers, mothers, grandparents, pensioners and all elderly people for their contribution to the development of the country and for many years of dedicated work, kindness and wisdom.
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