Anglicare Australia is marking Australia’s first Ageism Awareness Day, which is calling on Australians to ‘know it, name it’ when it comes to ageism.
Anglicare Australia is a member of EveryAGE Counts, which aims to tackle the nation’s problem with ageism.
“Ageism is pervasive, but it’s hidden,” said Executive Director Kasy Chambers.
“It has taken years to get serious action on aged care because the problems weren’t taken seriously. That inaction was driven by ageism.
“Problems like poverty and homelessness among older people are still being sidelined, and older people out of work face tough odds with age discrimination making it harder to compete.
“In a world without ageism, older Australians would have better job prospects, better health, and more control over their life decisions. This would benefit all of us, and older people themselves.”
EveryAGE Counts campaign director Marlene Krasovitsky said raising awareness about ageism was vital.
“Research shows that it is up to each of us, in our own communities, to take the first steps towards ending ageism. By knowing what ageism is, and naming it when we see it, we are taking an important step towards building an Australia without ageism,” Ms Krasovitsky said.
“Ageism is not benign or harmless. The World Health Organisation recently found that older people who hold negative views about their own ageing will live seven-and-a-half years less, on average, than those with positive attitudes.
“Often older Australians feel powerless when we encounter ageism, but we shouldn’t. If you can name ageism when you see it and take constructive actions in response, you’ll be helping to build an Australia without ageism.”
More information about ageism and how to end it is available at www.everyagecounts.org.au.