PRESS RELEASE – The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) subregional headquarters for the Caribbean has convened a Caribbean conference on Ageing, elder abuse and the rights of older persons.
The conference is being organised in collaboration with the Dominica Council on Ageing; the Ministry of Social Services, Family and Gender Affairs of Dominica, and the Association for the Promotion and Integration of Older Persons of Martinique (AMDOR) and takes place on November 30 – December 1, 2015 in Roseau, Dominica.
Population ageing is the most significant demographic trendwhich will shape Caribbean societies in the 21stcentury. Over the next 20 years, the number of persons aged 60 and over in the Caribbean subregion will increase from 1.1 million (13 per cent of the population) to 2 million (22 per cent).
By the year 2040 there will be 142 older persons for every 100 children in the CaribbeanJones, F. (2015). Ageing in the Caribbean and the human rights of older persons. Twin imperatives for action. Studies and Perspectives. ECLAC, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. http://vrb.al/ageing-doc.
This rapid and imminent ageing of the population has important implications for public policy. There is an urgent need for governments to strengthen social protection against the risks associated with ageing, for example loss of income, ill health, disability, loss of independence and isolation. At the same time, societies must embrace the contribution that older people can continue to make to economic, social and family life.
Leading the team at the meeting in DominicaisECLAC Caribbean Director Diane Quarless, who along with Population Affairs Officer Francis Jones, will speak on issues affecting the elderly population in the Caribbean.
The event will be attended by government officials and persons responsible for crafting policy for the elderly, as well as non-governmental organizations and civil society representatives, all of whom will benefit from the recommendations for action that will emerge during the discussions.
The meeting will also serve to launch an ECLAC report on ageing and human rights.