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Age discrimination is wrong and blights the lives of many of us in later life. Age UK’s Just equal treatment campaign challenged age discrimination and worked to make sure that we all have fair access to health services, insurance and employment.
Age UK and our supporters campaigned for the Equality Act, which introduced the first comprehensive anti-age discrimination legislation in the UK earlier this year. People in later life will benefit from important new measures to prevent age discrimination in public services, healthcare and on the high street, and these changes will have a real impact on all our lives. The Equality Act will encourage all parts of the public sector and many areas of the private sector to finally treat us depending on our needs and wishes, not just our age.
In July, the Government also announced that the Default Retirement Age will be abolished in October 2011. Age UK has played a lead role in making that happen. Our four-year campaign, to give older workers the freedom to choose when we retire, has finally paid off. The abolition of forced retirement is not only a huge victory for those of us at risk of being forced out of our jobs because of our age, but is also a landmark for the UK society at large, as we will all benefit from this change, as it will put hundreds of millions of pounds back into the public finances.
The work of Age UK to combat ageist prejudices continues and we will soon be launching a major, national campaign to change attitudes towards ageing and people in later life.
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By working together in local forums, we are making our voices heard on the issues that matter to us in later life, influencing the provision of services locally, regionally and nationally.
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