John Williams, Professor of Law, Aberystwyth University


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John Williams' presentation from the "Working towards a human rights convention" conference held by Age UK and Age International on the 31st July 2013.

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John Williams, Professor of Law, Aberystwyth University

  1. 1. International standards: strengthening human rights for older people at the national level Professor John Williams Department of Law and Criminology Aberystwyth University Twitter @legalolder
  2. 2. There is a lot of it!
  3. 3. Human rights What can we say about Human Rights? o Belong to everybody – whatever their age o Are based on fairness, equality, dignity and respect o The State must not unlawfully interfere with our rights, for example by treating us in an inhuman or degrading way o They require the State to act to protect our rights, for example to protect our life
  4. 4. What do human rights mean for people in later life? o I want to be safe from harm and abuse o I want to be warm and well fed o I want somewhere decent to live o I want to be independent o I want to contribute to society o I want to be able to take risks o I want good medical care o I want people to talk to me and not about me o I want to decide how I live o I want to do unwise things o I want to be heard o I want to be treated as me and not as a client, patient, bed blocker or whatever o I want to learn new things o I want justice o I want to live at home o I want to be in my community o I want an intimate relationship
  5. 5. Human rights standards must be used to improve older people’s lives o “witch” killings o Elder abuse and neglect o Skipped generation households o Poverty o Lack of social protection o Health and social care o Older people during and post conflict o Older people in times of disaster
  6. 6. Human rights standards must be used to improve older people’s lives o Operation Jasmine o Stafford o Fuel poverty o Elder abuse o Social care o Health care o Ageism in provision of services and in employment o Older prisoners o Negative attitudes
  7. 7. International human rights standards protecting rights at a national level An international convention on the rights of older people oWhat? oWhen? oWho?
  8. 8. “There is no old age. There is, as there always was, just you.” Carol Matthau O Magazine 2003