Old persons in the country are not much aware of their rights. It is one of the major reasons behind violations of their rights, a study by a NGO Agewell has revealed. The research was made public two days before the International Human Rights Day, which is falling December 10. As per the study by Agewell Foundation, titled ‘Older Persons are hardly aware of their human rights’ , very little focus has been given on human rights of the older persons in the country.
The survey shows that about 85.9 percent older people have never heard about human rights targetted specifically for them. Out of them, only 14.1 percent said that they know or have heard about their rights.
During its research, the NGO also found that about 23.3 percent of senior citizens were found living in pitiable conditions. In other words, many of them were found facing violation of their human rights. About 12.9 percent of senior citizens have also revealed that they did not get proper food in old age.
To add to the woes of senior citizens, every third senior citizen in the country is not getting the proper medicine health care facility, the study revealed. Shockingly, only 68.8 percent old persons have access to necessary medicines, healthcare and medical facilities in the country.
In its study, the NGO also noted that every second senior citizen is not getting proper respect from his/her family or the society. Nearly 48.6 percent of the elderly are also not getting respect by their family members, relatives or the society.
The study by Agewell Foundation also revealed that the preference of nuclear or smaller families have been found to be the main reason for violation of human rights of older persons as 75.5 percent of senior citizens, who were reportedly living in good conditions were living alone or are from small/nuclear families.It was also found that violation of Human Rights of senior citizens is more in urban areas as compared to villages. About 65 percent older people living in urban areas as compared to 57 percent from rural areas have revealed that they had to go through the critical phase of their life, the study by NGO further added.
While speaking about the survey, Himanshu Rath, Chairman of the Foundation said, “Due to lack of awareness about Human Rights of older persons, particularly among the elderly community, old people face increased incidences of age discrimination, ageism, elder abuse and mistreatment. Creating awareness of Human Rights of Older Persons in the society and the protection of their human rights has become an uphill task for all of us.”