The expertise of older people should be valued

The Scottish Greens today (25 April) pledged to address the challenges of an ageing society, with a call for a Commission on older people's health and personal independence.

Greater support for social care staff and unpaid carers is a headline policy of the Scottish Greens' 2016 manifesto. The party's proposal to reform Income Tax and replace Council Tax would generate additional funding fairly to invest in priorities such as social care, housing and new jobs.

Speaking ahead of a visit to The Hollies Lunch Club in Musselburgh, Alison Johnstone, Health and Social Care spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP candidate for Lothian, said:

“Staff providing social care are under such enormous pressure to get from one visit to the next that there simply isn’t time for a chat over a cup of tea. Lunch Clubs such as the one at The Hollies in Musselburgh provide a vital social connection for older people.

"The unpaid care and expertise which older people bring to society should be valued. A stronger group of Green MSPs would push for a Commission to establish how best to maintain older people’s health and independence. We'd also pay care staff a Living Wage Plus of £9 an hour and increase the Carer's Allowance by 50 per cent.

"Our ageing society is a challenge but should also be something that we celebrate. Greens believe Scotland can adapt to these shifting demographics and ensure we all retain our independence as we get older. A bolder Holyrood with more Green voices would work hard to bring about an inclusive culture where more people of all ages play a positive role in society."