‘Oldies’ back assisted dying legislation: report

Stock image.
Stock image.

OLDER West Australians are more likely than their interstate counterparts to highlight affordability of services as a way to make a difference to their personal situation, a landmark report has found.

The State of the (Older) Nation 2018 Report was released by the Council on the Ageing (COTA) today, Dec 5 providing a snapshot of life experiences and views of Australians aged over 50.

West Australians interviewed also highlighted the need for accessible and flat footpaths and removing stamp duty on houses built to universal designs as means that could make a difference.

More also said that equipping older people who are experiencing abuse with ways to live without abuse and ensuring crisis accommodation was available for single older women facing homelessness would make a difference.

Nationally, the report found the vast majority (84 per cent) of older Australians overwhelmingly support assisted dying legislation.

Most also feel a decade younger than their current age and nearly half feel less valued by society than when they were younger.

COTA Australia chief executive Ian Yates said people over 50 made up almost a third of the Australian population and most who were interviewed believed they have a good quality of life.

“However, we’re very concerned about the number of older Australians who are telling us they’re not coping with the rising cost of living – many of whom are renting and facing challenges to pay bills,” Mr Yates said.

“There are also too many older Australians feeling ignored, left behind or discriminated against in society and this report shows action is needed urgently, particularly to address the needs of vulnerable older Australians.”