11th European Green Party Council Meeting
Malmö, Sweden, 16 – 18 October 2009
16th October , 13.00 – 15.15 h
in Malmö, Universtity, Nordenskiöldsgatan 10, Room C 233
Report: Ute Schmitz, Ria Kaatee
“Senior Citizens` Rights”
19 Participants from Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, U.K.
Tony Cooreman, Belgium, Chairman of the Board: Introduction of Fringe Meeting
Dr. Lucille Ryan O`Shea, Ireland, Member of the Board: “Roots of Ageism”
Anita Kelles, Member of the Board, Finland: “International Elderly Rights and Obligations”
Tom van der Wal, Netherlands, Member of the Board: “Age Border Law”
National inputs of by ENGS members, coordinated and items, which are eligible for elderly rights of “European Charter for Safequarding of Human Rights in the City” by
Ute Schmitz, Germany, Secretary General
Birgit Meinhard-Schiebel, Austria, Member of the Board:
Power point presentation: Proposal of “Declaration of Elderly Rights”
In our fringe meeting on “Senior Citizens` Rights” we first regretted that in spite of UN, EU and National commitments on elderly rights, millions of European senior citizens in practice do not have full human rights.They are targets of social exclusion, marginalisation and adeist stereotype.
We noted that elderly people are also targets for arbitrary bounderies to services that violate their human rights.
We noted that global UN principles and conventions – such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Convent on Economic, Social and Culture Rights – endorse human rights of seniors. Moreover, convention on elimination of all forms of dicrimination of women requires countries in future to report on status of elderly women.
EU too recognizes the rights of the elderly in paragraph 25 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and in article 23 of the European Social Charter (revised) to remain full members of society for as long as possible.
We, the Green Seniors also wish to be full participants in green politic.
We call all of you for a common campain to influence our goverments to ratify the proposed EU Council Directive on implementing the principles of equal treatment between persons irrespective of religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation.
Human rights are moral principles, not to be treated on markets. Any erroneous talk that they cost money, should be turned into a green opportunity to demand for green taxes on environment and financial transactions. Funds hidden and taxes avoided in tax havens should also be brought back to benefit greener and more equal society for all ages !
We decided to prepare an action program with more information on senior rights together with a White Book. A White Book will demonstrate the best European practices and policies on elderly rights.
Birgit Meinhard-Schiebel added, that they in Austria have implemented in the constitution Children Rights. In Austria they use the name for the process to demand elderly rights “Age Politics”, because it is important to pronounce the word AGE very clearly. The first step to present the “Seniors Citizens` Rights” in “Vienna Green City Councillor Club” was a good start, because they got a lot of agreement and important additions and they will continue to work on it, with the hope to implement the Senior Citizens` Rights in the Austrian constitution as soon as possible.
(Report: Ute Schmitz/ENGS/Secretary General)