Queen's Speech 2015
Published on 27 May 2015 05:30 PM
The Government today set out its legislative plans for the year ahead in the Queen's Speech to parliament.
A commitment was made to improve healthcare across the country by supporting the NHS 5-year plan with £8bn extra funding by 2020 and integrating health and social care.
There were no proposals for a British Bill of Rights to replace the Human Rights Act. Ministers will instead enter a period of consultation to discuss the advantages of such a change.
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: 'The Government's commitment in the Queen's Speech to the NHS's 5-year plan, to increased integration of health and care and to maintaining the triple lock for the basic state pension for the remainder of this Parliament are all good news for older people.
'We are also very pleased that the Queen's Speech referred to the importance of dignity and security in retirement since in our view these two principles should underpin all policy and legislation affecting older people.
'Since the Human Rights Act came into force some 18 years ago, older people have been able to use it to protect and give effect to their rights, including their rights to be treated with dignity and respect, free of abuse and neglect, in health and care settings.
'From this point of view we are pleased the Government has decided not to rush to repeal the Act at this stage. We hope the Government will consult widely in developing its proposals in this area and will consider carefully how older people's rights can best be safeguarded and ideally enhanced. Any weakening of them would be a source of great concern to Age UK.
'To create a society that truly gives older people the dignity, respect and care they deserve the Government will also need to tackle some systemic problems that many older people in our society currently face, such as fuel poverty and a lack of suitable housing and support to enable older people to live independently at home for as long as possible.'
What the Queen's Speech means for us