New Zealand has a rapidly ageing population, this is a fact. A draft strategy and summary Better Later Life – He Oranga Kaumātua 2019-2034 has been released with key action areas identified and feedback requested by Monday 3rd June 2019.
According to Super Seniors the current 65+ population is 747,800. By 2034 which is only only 15 years away, this number is estimated to be 1,207,800 – this is almost half a million additional 65+ Kiwis.
The Guiding principles of the draft strategy include:
- Valuing people as they are
- Keeping people safe
- Recognising diversity and that everyone is unique
- Taking a whole-of-life and whanau-centred approach to ageing
- Taking collective responsibility to plan and act for later life
While older people are more likely to own their own home, this number is declining. Part of the draft strategy includes encouraging both the employment of people aged 50+ and local authorities planning for an ageing population.
The key areas include in the draft strategy include:
- Preparing for financial and economic security
- Improving access to health and social services
- Providing housing choices and options so people can age in the community
- Enhancing opportunities for social connection and participation
- Providing accessible built environments so people can participate in their community
Part of the social connection and participation is reducing loneliness and that older people are socially connected. This includes the use of technology which has become part of daily life for many. Accessibility is noted to be factored in the draft report along with people who do not use technology still being able to access the services they need.
You can have your say by Monday 3rd June 2019.
You can read more about the draft strategy including Cabinet papers and minutes, a summary of the submissions report and expert opinions here. This is also where you can submit your feedback.