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Older people urged to share experiences of ageism in new campaign

Ageism is when a person is treated unfairly because of their age Credit: PA

Older people in Wales are being asked to share examples of discrimination they have faced in a new campaign to tackle ageism.

The Older People's Commissioner for Wales, Heléna Herklots CBE, has launched the Everyday Ageism campaign to highlight and challenge the daily forms of age discrimination faced by older people.

What is ageism?

Ageism, also know as age discrimination, is when a person is treated unfairly because of their age.

It can also include how older people are represented in the media, which can have a wider impact on the public's attitude.

Some examples of ageism include:

  • losing a job because of your age
  • being refused interest-free credit, a new credit card, car insurance or travel insurance because of your age
  • receiving a lower quality of service in a shop or restaurant because of the organisation’s attitude to older people
  • being refused a referral from a doctor to a consultant because you are ‘too old’
  • being refused membership to a club or trade association because of your age.

Source: Age UK

Credit: PA

The Commissioner wants older people and the public to share examples of the ageism they have seen or encountered, so she can challenge and hold to account those who use ageist language, perpetuate ageist stereotypes, or discriminate against older people.

She said ageism is ''often seen as being acceptable.''

Every day, we are bombarded with ageist language and imagery that reinforces stereotypes about older people that are often focused on ill-health, decline and frailty, and growing older is often presented as something that should be feared rather than celebrated.

This leads to a society in which we see age discrimination in the workplace, within health, social care, and other key public services, as well as across the media and advertising.

A growing body of research demonstrates the many ways that ageism negatively impacts upon older people, affecting their physical and mental health, recovery from illness, levels of social exclusion and even life expectancy

– Heléna Herklots CBE, The Older People's Commissioner for Wales

A series of workshops will take place to help older people identify and challenge ageism alongside a new information guide.