This year’s COTA National Policy Council (NPC) was a great success. The State and Territory COTAs, along with COTA Australia, gathered to look at policy and advocacy successes over the last year and engage in detailed discussion of the key issues impacting older Australians into the future, the COTAs have developed a clear vision of the policy and advocacy priorities likely to dominate 2015-16.
The NPC meeting included detailed discussion of the key issues facing older Australians into 2015-16. Over the past year the COTAs have continued to advocate on behalf of older Australians and has made significant achievements in the areas of aged care, health and pensions. This includes:
COTA NSW has been particularly active among the COTAs on the issue of human rights. In recent years COTA NSW has tabled the idea of developing a rights-based framework. Such a framework would not function as a policy per se. Instead, it would make the concept of older people’s human rights more explicit and prominent, and would provide a set of framing principles that would affect the way other policies were developed and applied. NPC members supported the idea of investigating a framework draft to be presented at the next meeting. Additionally, both COTA Australia and COTA Victoria are founding members of the Global Alliance on the Rights of the Older Person and will continue to work closely with the Australian Human Rights Commission to eliminate age discrimination in all its forms.
The discussions at the NPC resulted in the identification of a number of areas that will demand increased policy and advocacy work into the future. These include:
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