Age UK response to launch of BBC consultation on TV licence fees for over-75s
By: Age UK
Published on 20 November 2018 12:00 AM
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK said:
“We will continue to hold both the BBC and the Government to account for the future of the TV licence concession for over 75s."
“Despite recent progress, there are still significant numbers of older people living on very low incomes who would genuinely struggle to pay the licence fee if required to do so.
“There are two million people aged 75+, one in two of whom is disabled and one in four of whom view the television as their main form of companionship. For many others, including those who are chronically lonely - a social problem we are far more aware of than was the case a few years ago - the TV is a precious window on the world.”
“The BBC took on responsibility for the concession as part of a broader deal with the Government in which they received some significant benefits. Now it is their responsibility to appreciate the very significant role that television plays in many older people's lives and the damaging consequences of watering the concession down or removing it from them.”
“Our initial appraisal is that any of the new options set out would introduce significant practical difficulties and create unfairness for different groups of older people.”