Council calls on the government to establish a Minister for Older People
At Knowsley Council’s full Council meeting on 20 September 2017, a Notice of Motion calling on the government to establish a Minister for Older People was passed.
This Council believes that the appointment of a Minister for Older People in Government is a real opportunity to commit to a coherent cross-governmental approach to age and ageing.
There are gaps between the remit of the Health and Pensions Ministers which needs to be addressed in order to effectively deal with the unprecedented demographic change that underpins the transformation of the economy, training, work and social care.
A similar model of that for the Minister for Disabled people should be considered. They work successfully across all Government departments to ensure disabled people are not disadvantaged in any way. The same approach needs to be considered for older people.
Cllr Chris O’Hare, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Member Champion for Older People’s Services, said “From a local authority perspective, we are working across a range of council services, as well as with our partner agencies, to plan for the needs of the projected ageing population. I feel that the Government should attach the same priority and approach across their own Government departments to ensure that people over the age of 50 are skilled, empowered and enabled to contribute fully to society, whilst also taking into consideration their health and living needs, as well as tackling issues such as isolation.”
Council joins Tyred campaign
Also at the meeting, Knowsley Councillors unanimously passed a Notice of Motion to support the Tyred campaign as well as calling upon the Government to amend legislation to prohibit tyres exceeding the age of 10 years being used on public service vehicles.
The Tyred campaign was developed following a devastating coach crash on the A3 in September 2012, which resulted in three fatalities and many more injured as they travelled back from the Isle of Wight’s Bestival music.
The inquest into the crash found that the front nearside tyre, which was 19 years old, was responsible for the crash. However, legislation has never been changed with only guidelines amended which recommend, but crucially do not require, that tyres over 10 years should not be fitted.
Tyred is a national tyre safety campaign, founded by Frances Molloy whose son, Michael, was one of the people who tragically lost their lives in the coach crash. The campaign is calling for a ban on the use of tyres older than 10 years on passenger safety vehicles.
Cllr Eddie Connor, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and proposer of the Notice of Motion, said “It is unbelievable that there is currently no limit on how old a tyre can be, and it is essential that old and dangerous tyres should not be allowed on our roads. I and my fellow Councillors fully support that a change in the law could have a significant impact on public safety and that no-one else should be put at risk by old and dangerous tyres.”
You can read more about the Tyred campaign on the website.