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Last Updated: Sunday, 2 September 2007, 23:03 GMT 00:03 UK
Call for more action on ageism
A pensioner
Older people face discrimination in goods and services, the charity says
Almost two-thirds of elderly people believe not enough is being done by the government to combat ageism, according to a survey by charity Help the Aged.

Many of those questioned wanted an outright ban on age discrimination, with others saying they faced a daily barrage of incidents of ageism.

The survey questioned 1,321 adults aged over 60 by telephone during last month.

The charity will also present 450 responses to the government's Discrimination Law Review on Monday.

'Active role'

Last year ageism at work for people under 65 was outlawed.

The government's Discrimination Law Review is consulting on whether further steps are necessary.

Nearly two thirds (63%) of those questioned thought the government was not doing enough to combat ageism.

The charity's research also suggested just over half the older people reported that health professionals dismissed their problems as "just old age", while one in 10 aged 60 and over said they had been spoken to in an ageist way.

Kate Jopling, head of public affairs at Help the Aged, said: "It's high time the government stopped dragging its heels and took an active role in fighting age discrimination.

"We live in a society where racism and sexism are not tolerated, yet age prejudice is tolerated and even accepted in goods, facilities and services."


Help the Aged has launched a Just Equal Treatment campaign to put ageism on an equal footing with racism and sexism.

The charity is calling for the Single Equality Bill - which the government is currently consulting on - to include a ban on age discrimination to cover the provision of goods, facilities and services.

Ministers are looking at how age, race, gender, disability, sexual orientation and religion can be brought together into a set of laws - the Single Equality Bill.

The charity also wants and extension of the public sector equality duty to include older people's needs in relation to public services.

The government has said it is committed to a Single Equality Bill and placed "huge importance" on equality.

Help the Aged discuss the results of their survey

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