First Look

CCRP Jamaica represented at Caribbean Conference on ageing in Dominica

Caribbean Community of Retired Persons | 2016-01-13 00:00:00

Local seniors’ organisation the Caribbean Community of Retired Persons (CCRP) participated in the Caribbean Conference on Ageing, Elder Abuse and the Rights of Older Persons, held recently in Roseau, Dominica.  There was a strong call for action as much needs to be done as the number of older persons is set to double over the next twenty years, which will have a significant impact on Caribbean societies. 

Mr. Dennis Jones, CCRP Director, who represented CCRP at the conference, stated that he was heartened by the high level of participation from Caribbean countries, and the high level of interest shown by politicians in the host country.  There were   presentations from various panels on particular areas of interest.  Some of the issues addressed were, the human rights of older persons from  international and national perspectives and, by extension, the rights of older persons in disaster and emergency situations; the issue of economic security and social protection, particularly the financial abuse of older persons by the expropriation of their income or assets by family, friends or caregivers and the social and physical isolation and loneliness among older persons and the impact of constraints such as declining personal mobility that can limit older persons’ ability to participate fully in community life.

Mr. Jones commended the Economic Commission for Latin American and the Caribbean (ECLAC) Secretariat for their support in providing the relevant data and reports for setting the framework within a global and regional context.  He noted, “Although nothing concrete was proposed, all the representatives from the Caribbean expressed great interest in combining country efforts; however, much needs to be done to engage local political decision makers in advancing laws and provisions for older persons.”

The need for more effective protection of older persons within the family as well as the wider community cannot be over-emphasized. The issue has become more pressing especially in light of the abhorrent case of the rape of a seventy-five year old woman, which was reported recently.  The CCRP strongly condemns this brutal criminal act and is appealing to communities to be more vigilant and take collective responsibility for the welfare of the elderly within their communities.

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