Older Persons International Policy for Older Persons

United Nations Open-Ended Working Group on Ageing

Once a year, in New York, the United Nations (UN) Open-Ended Working Group on Ageing (OEWG-A) deliberates ways of strengthening the rights of older persons by examining two main issues per session and reviewing the issues of die the previous session.

Second United Nations International Plan of Action on Ageing

The Second United Nations International Plan of Action on Ageing was adopted in Madrid in 2002 (Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing - MIPAA). This political plan of action is being implemented by the Member States by means of national action plans that are based on regional implementation strategies. Every five years the Country Report informs about the implementation of the National Plan of Action in Germany. The last report was written in 2021 under the leadership of the Federal Ministry for Senior Citizens.

Implementation at the European level

Responsible for the implementation of the Second International Plan of Action on Ageing at European level is the UNECE Regional Commission (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe). The corresponding standing working group on ageing (UNECE-Standing Working Group on Ageing - UNECE-SWGA) holds a conference of ministers every five years to further develop the 56 Member States' strategy for the future.

The recent UNECE Ministerial Conference on Ageing was held in 2022 in Rome. The Ministerial Declaration adopted by the 56 Member States lists the main areas for the coming five years:

  • Promoting active and healthy ageing throughout life
  • Ensuring access to long-term care and support for carers and families
  • Mainstreaming ageing to advance a society for all ages

Detailed information and practical examples from the member states on selected topics can be found in the Policy Briefs published by the UNECE Standing Working Group on Ageing.

European Union

Germany is also committed to older people and their rights at European Union (EU) level. During the German EU-Council Presidency the second half of 2020, Council conclusions were adopted by the EU member states on 9 October 2020. In addition a high level international online conference deliberated opportunities and challenges of digitialization for ageing societies. The Trio Partners Portugal and Slovenia followed in this path, with Council Conclusions and a high level conference. Ageing remains on the EU's Agenda.

National expert discussions

The Federal Ministry for Senior Citizens regularly invites experts from science and practice, as well as representatives of organisations for older persons, to attend national expert discussions. In these discussions, the points of view and needs of older people are deliberated and the resulting considerations subsequently inform the international debate. Conversely, such discussions also serve to incorporate the results of international debates at national level. Important partners of the Federal Ministry for Senior Citizens are the BAGSO - German National Association of Senior Citizens' Organisations, the German Centre of Gerontology and the German Institute for Human Rights.