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Policy and Engagement

Age NI educates, campaigns and lobbies the NI Executive, the NI Assembly and Government Departments and agencies to ensure that older people’s issues are represented at the highest level.

Our policy team is challenging government to tackle the barriers of poverty and discrimination, and to improve health & social care provision. Successful campaigns have included working with our partners in the age sector to secure 80,000 additional fuel payments and lobbying for an Older People’s Commissioner.

View our past campaigns


All Party Group on Ageing and Older People

The All Party Group on Ageing and Older People is a cross party group of MLAs and was set up in May 2015 with Age NI acting as Secretariat. Its aim is to ensure that the issues affecting older people are a priority for the Northern Ireland Assembly. It ensures that Assembly policies prepare Northern Ireland for an ageing society, and it encourages debate and discussion between the Northern Ireland Age Sector and MLAs.

Why is this important?

The United Nations called global populatio ageing 'a situation without parallel in the history of humanity' in its 2002 report World Population Ageing 1950-2050.¹

Population projections for Northern Ireland² indicate that in the 25 years from 2016 - 2041, the number of people aged 65 and over will increase by almost two thirds (65.1%) to 49,700 people. The proportion of the population aged 85 and over will double from 2% to 4.1% to reach 82,800 people.

Our population is projected to age at a faster rate than the rest of the UK. By mid 2028, the proportion of the population aged 65 and over is projected to be 20.1%, overtaking that of children (19.6% aged 0-15 years) for the first time ever.

These projectons forecast a significant increase in the size of the population at older ages. Longer lives represent many opportunities and challenges for our society, employers, the economy, welfare system, as well as our health and social care system. 


Key Asks

  • To ensure the successful implementation and monitoring of the Ageing Strategy for NI (cited)
  • To ensure that the shaping of future legislation and services for older people in NI is informed through dialogue between older peoples’ groups, networks and political representatives.
  • To ensure that the current 350,000+ older people in Northern Ireland are treated as fully engaged citizens with equal rights
  • To ensure that provision is made for and consultation sought to support the growing ageing population of NI

How the All Party Group works

The group will meet three times a year at Parliament buildings, Stormont in Belfast. Each meeting is normally held on a Tuesday at 1pm and is open to the public. Please advise the Secretariat in advance of the meeting if you wish to attend. Meetings will be based around the key issues affecting older people with presentations and discussions with the Northern Ireland Age Sector, key academics and other lead age and stakeholder organisations.

Members of the All Party Group on Ageing and Older People

Office Bearing Posts
Chair – Pam Cameron MLA, DUP, South Antrim
Vice Chair - Ian Milne MLA, Sinn Fein, Mid Ulster
Secretary - Chris Lyttle MLA, Alliance, East Belfast
Treasurer - Stewart Dickson MLA, East Antrim

Kelly Armstrong MLA, Alliance, Strangford
Roy Beggs MLA, UUP, East Antrim
Paula Bradley MLA, DUP, North Belfast
Sinead Bradley MLA, SDLP, South Down
Michaela Boyle MLA, Sinn Fein, West Tyrone
Mark H Durkan MLA, SDLP, Foyle
Colm Gildernew MLA, Sinn Fein, Fermanagh & South Tyrone
Dolores Kelly MLA, SDLP, Upper Bann
Carla Lockhart MLA, DUP, Upper Bann,
Chris Lyttle MLA, Alliance, East Belfast
Claire Sugden, Independent, East Londonderry

Secretariat of the All Party Group on Ageing and Older People

Age NI act as Secretariat for the All Party Group on Ageing and Older People. If you would like to get in touch with the Secretariat please contact the Policy and Engagement Department, Age NI on 02890 245729 or email

As per Northern Ireland Assembly rules, there will be at least three meetings per year of the All Party Group. If you would like to attend a meeting, please advise the Secretariat by phoning Age NI on 02890 245729 or email


Last updated: Aug 21 2018

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