County news: Treatment of older people criticised

Pauline Jackson with Wealden MP Nus Ghani
Pauline Jackson with Wealden MP Nus Ghani

A woman has spoken out about the treatment of older people in Sussex as part of today’s Older People’s Day (Thursday, October 1).

Pauline Jackson, from Bexhill, is a trustee of Age UK East Sussex and a member of the Sussex Elders’ Commission (SEC).

SEC is a new initiative from Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Katy Bourne which offers older residents a chance to support, challenge and inform policing priorities.

“I feel passionate about older people and want to do all I can to help ensure that they have a good quality of life,” Ms Jackson said.

“Older people are often ignored and made to feel that their views don’t count.

“I am particularly concerned about those who are isolated or suffer from loneliness.

“As part of my work on the SEC I want to be able to share residents’ thoughts on how safe they feel in the community and the priorities they would like to see the police focus on.

“I’ve spoken to many people so far and the overwhelming message that comes back is that we are actually giving up our time to talk to them and they are so grateful that somebody cares.

“They tell me that this is the first time anybody has asked for their opinion.”

The SEC have had conversations with more than 800 people so far and attracted support from across the county, including Wealden MP Nus Ghani.

“As Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Ageing and Older People I wanted to acknowledge the innovative approach being taken by Sussex PCC Katy Bourne to engage with older people and articulate their concerns and ideas on policing, crime and community safety,” she said.

“I have invited members to give evidence to the APPG and hope to host the launch of their report and recommendations early next year.”

Mrs Bourne said everybody should feel their views count and that’s why it’s so important older people are given a voice on the policing and crime issues that matter to them.

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