NB Silver Voices Members can obtain back copies of specific briefings by e-mailing email@example.com
PENSION AGE TO RISE AGAIN?
Our latest Briefing 47/19 analyses a report from an influential think-tank which proposes that the state pension age should rise to 70 by 2028 and to 75 by 2035.
Our Briefing 43/19 highlights the appalling lack of accessible homes suitable for older people; and seeks Silver Voices members' views on the priorities for tackling this crisis.
BREXIT AND HEALTHCARE
Briefing 40/19 describes the major risks to the health of senior citizens from a 'No Deal' Brexit
SCAMMERS TARGET US
Our Briefing 39/19 shows how and why scammers target vulnerable older people.
Briefing 37/19, for members only, applauds the belated media campaigns to highlight the gross discrimination faced by those of us living with dementia.
GPs REFUSING TO PRESCRIBE MEDICINES
Our Briefing 35/19 covers the increasing difficulty of getting appointments with GPs; and the new policy of refusing to prescribe medicines that can be bought from pharmacists.
ABUSE IN CARE HOMES: STAFF AND RESIDENTS ALIKE
Briefing 34/19 covers surveys showing that poor wages and conditions in the residential care sector leads to abuse and neglect for both workers and those they care for.
CARERS: THE PHYSICAL AND MENTAL TOLL
Our Briefing 30/19 during Carers' Week describes research on the health impact of unpaid caring on the carers themselves. The response from the Government has been token.
HOUSE OF LORDS ATTACK ON PENSIONS AND BENEFITS
Briefing 27/19 publicises a disgraceful report by a House of Lords Committee which proposes scrapping the triple lock on state pensions, restrictions on free bus passes and cuts to other senior citizen benefits; all in the name of intergenerational fairness!
EXCESSIVE FUNERAL COSTS
Our Briefing 26/19 covers Silver Voices' comments to the Competition and Markets Authority on their investigation into sharply rising funeral costs.
RESIDENTIAL HOMES MARKET COLLAPSE
Briefing 24/19 describes the collapse of major care homes operator Four Seasons and the fragile state of the residential homes market. Market failure has been caused by hedge funds extracting capital and loading debt on the homes.
AGE GAP TAX
Our Briefing 18/19 for members only, reports on this cruel tax which will leave poorer pensioners over £7K a year worse off. It affects pensioners with a younger partner below the state pension age. The couple will now be denied pension credit.
Silver Voices Briefing 16/19 covers the worrying digital divide in the UK. While both public and private bodies push us to on-line transactions, there are still 5.3 million adults in the UK who are defined as internet non-users. Over half of these people are over 75.
Our Briefing 11/19 covers research showing how unprepared the UK is to house an ageing population. 93% of UK homes do not meet basic accessibility standards. Not only is there a need to tighten accessibility requirements for new homes but also a major retrofitting programme is necessary on existing accommodation.
BUS JOURNEYS PLUMMET
In Briefing 9/19 we analyse the falling number of bus journeys in the UK (in England down 85 million in one year). Free bus passes are useless if there are no buses!
SOCIAL CARE AND HUMAN RIGHTS
Briefing 4/19 for our members covers research from the international organisation Human Rights Watch, which finds that unfair social care assessments are breaching the human rights of senior citizens and are in contravention of the Care Act.
NHS LONG-TERM PLAN
Our Briefing 3/19 analyses the NHS Long-Term Plan and finds many weaknesses. We conclude that the NHS will continue to lurch from crisis to crisis, unless these weaknesses are addressed.
Silver Voices Briefing 60/18, for members only, describes the impact of the police cuts on senior citizens, increasing our vulnerability to fraudsters and making neighbourhoods less safe.
END OF AUSTERITY?
Briefing 58/18 analyses the Budget and finds that apart from health the cuts to public services will continue.
SCAMMERS OF THE ELDERLY
Our Briefing 54/18 covers research by the BBC showing the extent to which organised gangsters are targeting vulnerable elderly people.
SENIOR CITIZENS AND BREXIT
We cover the serious implications of a hard Brexit for senior citizens, including the potential impact on public services, pensions and the care sector (Briefing 46/18).
INACTION ON DEMENTIA COSTS LIVES
Briefing 45/18 summarises research which finds that extra dementia training for home care staff could save up to 20,000 lives a year across the UK.
NATIONAL INSURANCE HEIST
Read how the National Insurance Fund has been deprived of billions by successive Governments (Briefing 42/18 for members only).
DON'T FORGET THE CARERS
This Briefing (35/18) analyses research showing the toll of caring on carers' physical and mental health.
BENEFITS EXCLUSION ZONE
Briefing 33/18 provides valuable information on how the trend towards on-line only applications is denying people the benefits they are entitled to.
END OF LIFE CARE
Our Briefing 31/18 shows how the UK is lagging behind the rest of Europe in providing real choice for end of life care.
Briefing 29/18 argues that a boost for retirement housing would not only free up the housing market but also help to ease the social care crisis.
NURSING ON THE CHEAP
Our Briefing 24/18 for members only covers research showing the deadly effect of nursing on the cheap, by substituting trained nurses with healthcare assistants.
More senior citizens are dying from falls. Deaths amongst men over 85 have risen by 177% since 2008. This rise has been put down by professional bodies to cuts in social care at home and shortages of hospital staff (Briefing 22/18).
Briefing 18/18 describes the huge rise in the expense of dying in recent years and the postcode lottery in funeral costs: all leading to an increase in funeral poverty.
SORRY DECLINE OF UK BUS NETWORK
Briefing 13/18 reports on BBC Research showing the dramatic decline in the UK bus network.
Silver Voices Briefing 11/18 provides a comprehensive briefing on the hot political issue of loneliness.
ACCOUNTABLE CARE ORGANISATIONS
Our Briefing 08/18 describes the development of ACOs in the NHS and the potential dangers they present. Accountable Care Organisations are completely unaccountable!
PRIVATE CARE HOMES MARKET IN THE WAKE OF CARILLION
Briefing 06/18 analyses the private sector care homes market in the wake of the Carillion collapse.
UK PENSIONS: THE WORLD'S WORST
Our briefing 03/18 publicises that the UK state pension is now the worst in the developed world and highlights the inadequacies of Government pension policy.
WHAT DO WE MEAN BY QUALITY CARE?
Our first briefing of 2018 (01/18) discusses the limitations of emphasising "care" for senior citizens, when what is really required is wider support in making a continuing contribution to society.
HOSPITAL TRAVEL NIGHTMARE
Our Briefing 57/17 supports an Age UK campaign to highlight the extreme difficulties faced by many senior citizens in travelling for hospital appointments.
SOCIAL CARE CATASTROPHE?
This briefing 56/17 summarises the depth of the social care crisis and reports on warnings by local government of an "imminent social care catastrophe".
Silver Voices Briefing 55/17 warns of the many pitfalls in buying a new build retirement home.
Our Briefing 53/17 gives examples of how private sector providers are profiting from the NHS funding crisis.
SUPPORTED HOUSING ON THE BRINK
This Briefing (51/17) reveals that 85% of new supported housing schemes have been scrapped or put on ice because of uncertainty over the impact of Government benefit changes.
Latest Age UK research shows that pensioner poverty is on the rise again, up to 1.9 million last year. Briefing 50/17 also covers official statistics on 'material deprivation' amongst senior citizens.
HEDGE FUNDS AND CARE HOMES
Despite the care homes crisis, hedge funds and venture capitalists are using care homes as cash cows by loading ever-increasing debt on to them. Our briefing 48/17 explains this strategy.
CARE HOMES SECTOR IN MELTDOWN
Our briefing 47/17 reports on research showing the extent of the crisis in the care homes sector: shortfall in beds, families forking out on top-up fees and chronic staff shortages leading to poor quality care.
UNPAID CARERS TAKEN FOR GRANTED
Briefing 45/17 covers research on the plight of unpaid carers, 1.5 million of whom are over 65.
INCREASE IN STATE PENSION AGE
Our Briefing 43/17 covers the government announcement to bring forward (by seven years) the increase to 68 in the state pension age. We point out that this proposal is by no means a 'done deal'.
CENTRAL AND LOCAL TENSIONS ERUPT
This policy briefing 41/17 describes the rising tensions between central and local government over austerity and the social care crisis.
MODERN BANKING AND AGE DISCRIMINATION
Briefing 40/17 for members only, covers a Report on the way in which bank branch closures, internet banking and the move towards a cashless economy are increasing the financial exclusion of the very oldest in society.
WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE DEMENTIA CHALLENGE?
Our Briefing 24/17 queries what has happened to the Prime Minister's Challenge on Dementia 2020? No public updates since March 2016: is the current PM as committed to the issue as David Cameron?
POST-BREXIT STAFFING CRISIS LOOMS
Briefing 20/17 examines the looming staffing crisis in the social care sector; from a combination of high staff turnover, increasing demand and Brexit jitters amongst EU nationals. We suggest what needs to be done by Government to avert this crisis.
STATE PENSION AGE ON THE RISE AGAIN
Our Briefing 18/17, for members only, analyses two reports recommending that rises in the State Pension Age (SPA) are accelerated. One report suggests that the SPA should rise to 70 in less than forty years. The Government says it will take a decision in May.
Briefing 15/17 analyses the need for long-term funding solutions for the NHS and social care. Silver Voices argues that every attempt should be made to forge a cross-party approach to these deep-rooted problems.
Our Briefing 14/17 for members provides an analysis of the Budget. Silver Voices argues that the extra £2 billion for social care is woefully inadequate and will be gobbled up by the planned increases in the living wage for social care staff. There was no substantial injection of funding for the NHS.
Our Briefing 9/17 for members analyses recent research from the Nuffield Trust revealing that delayed discharges from hospital are running three times higher than the official (already disgraceful) figures. Also the NHS is responsible for more delays than the lack of social care.
HOUSING WHITE PAPER
Our Briefing 8/17 for members covers the Government White Paper on housing from a senior citizens' perspective. The economic case for investment in retirement housing is totally ignored. Platitudes not proposals is our general analysis.
NHS: STATE OF DENIAL OR DELIBERATE STRATEGY?
Briefing 5/17 on the NHS crisis debates whether the refusal of the Government to provide emergency funding for the NHS is due to indifference or lack of understanding; or whether it is a deliberate strategy to undermine public support for the health service.
BUSES: MORE POWERS BUT MORE CUTS
Silver Voices Briefing 3/17 for members only explained how the new powers being given to local government to set standards for local bus networks are being completely undermined by the huge cuts in funding for subsidised bus services over recent years.
CHANCELLOR TURNS HIS BACK ON SOCIAL CARE
Our Briefing 63/16 covered the Chancellor's Autumn Statement and highlighted the total absence of any mention of the social care crisis in his speech. Ignoring a situation where over one million vulnerable senior citizens are already being denied the social care help they need has been condemned from across the political spectrum.
STATE PENSION AGE ON THE RISE?
Silver Voices Briefing 58/16 reports on the latest review of the state pension age, expected to report in 2017. The UK already has one of the highest SPAs in the developed world but expect it to be hiked up again.
DISGRACEFUL WAITING TIMES FOR CATARACT OPS
Silver Voices Briefing 57/16 highlights the postcode lottery over waiting times for cataract operations. The average waiting between referral from an eye clinic to the actual operation varies from 467 days to 15 days depending on where you live.