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#AgeWithRights Global Rally

By 28/03/2024No Comments

Established in 2011, the Global Alliance for the Rights of Older People was born out of the need to strengthen the rights and voice of older people globally.

The mission of the Global Alliance is to support and enhance civil society’s engagement at national, regional and international levels on the need for a new international instrument on the rights of older persons. The Global Alliance for the Rights of Older People seeks a world in which older persons live free from discrimination and can ‘age with rights’.

The #AgeWithRights Global Rally takes place 8-14 April 2024. It is a key part of the Age With Rights campaign that provides an opportunity for people around the world who support the stronger protection and promotion of older people’s human rights to unite and call on governments to take action and support the drafting of the United Nations (UN) convention on the rights of older people.

Why do we need a convention for older people?

Age discrimination and ageism are tolerated across the world, and older people experience discrimination and the violation of their rights at family, community and institutional levels.

At the same time, unprecedented demographic ageing means that the number of people who are likely to experience age discrimination and violation of their rights in old age will increase.

Even though international human rights laws apply to people of all ages, specific reference to older people is rare. As a result, older people’s rights are not being protected sufficiently by human rights monitoring mechanisms, governments, the human rights community and civil society.

The rally is planned ahead of the next annual Working Group meeting of governments and other stakeholders on older people’s human rights at the United Nations (UN) in New York from 20 – 24 May 2024. The Co-facilitators, Portugal and Brazil, will present the intergovernmentally negotiated recommendations prepared as part of the intersessional work since the last session in April 2023.

The goal: To urge governments to participate actively in the UN Working Group meeting in May and support the drafting of a new UN convention on the rights of older people.

Older people around the world face particular challenges in enjoying their human rights. Governments have recognised that this includes, among others, protection against violence, abuse and neglect, the right to food, housing, work, education, and health and care. Older persons clearly face discrimination and negative treatment on the basis of their age and this can be made worse by other forms of discrimination based on gender or disability for example.

There are very few explicit references to older people’s rights in existing international human rights treaties. These treaties do not cover all aspects of older people’s rights and are unclear about how human rights apply in older age. International agreements and policy frameworks dedicated to older people and ageing, such as the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, have also proven to be inadequate and incapable of protecting older people’s rights.

The solution we are calling for is to create an international legally binding ‘UN convention’ on older people’s rights. A new UN convention would provide governments, service providers, businesses, civil society and older people everywhere, with the clarity and guidance we need to build a more equal society for people of all ages and ensure respect for our human rights as we age. It would result in greater accountability for and monitoring of older persons’ rights.

Learn more about the campaign and GAROP

We call on the government to support a new UN convention to strengthen the protection and promotion of older people’s rights globally.

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