Older Aussies demand equal and full rights

POLITICIANS will only ignore Australia's older generations "at their own risk", the head of the Council of the Ageing said on Tuesday.

Hosting an election forum on senior's issues in Canberra, COTA chief executive Ian Yates said older Australians were demanding equal and full rights, regardless of their age.

Mr Yates said voters older than 50 now made up 40% of all voting Australians, and political parties would only "ignore their concerns, hopes and aspirations at their own risk".

The stark warning came as the council launched its election platform, calling for an end to age discrimination and equal access to health care for older Australians.

"We've asked older Australians what matters to them and resoundingly they tell us they want a fair go and support so they can live the best life possible with choice, dignity and good health," Mr Yates said.

"The negative politics that portrays our ageing society as a 'problem' is outdated and simply incorrect."

Mr Yates said the ageing population provided an "unprecedented opportunity" if the next government was willing to harness the skills and experience already available.

The lobby group called for "a new deal for older Australians" including better workforce participation and improved standards of living.

Topics:  aged care elderly people federal election 2013 seniors

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