Press Release

Minister Callely marks United Nations Day for Older People

Mr. Ivor Callely, T.D., Minister for Services for Older People, today (1 October 2003) hosts the Conference on Older People´s Needs – A Consultative Process at Farmleigh House.

Extending a warm welcome to all, the Minister said he regarded it as privilege to host an event that highlights the many different ways in which our community as a whole contributes to the welfare of older people.

Minister Callely acknowledged that every day Government Departments and State Agencies take decisions that impact on people´s lives. He recognised the importance of harnessing the full potential of older people in such decisions and he expressed his determination that this opportunity be maximised.

The Minister asked delegates firstly to reflect on the idea of positive ageing and the good news story that it is, and secondly to express what they would like on the agenda to improve the quality of life for older people and to examine the practical steps needed to achieve this.

The Minister expressed gratitude to past generations who were the ones who built the foundations for our success today. However he emphasized that this gratitude should not be reflected in a way which is patronizing to old people or sparingly given.

The Minister welcomed the recent reports from the Equality Authority, Implementing Equality for Older People and from the National Economic and Social Forum, and he confirmed his determination to work towards the implementation of the recommendations in the reports.

Minister Callely will give his closing statement at 3.30pm.