Strasbourg, 19 February 2014 - The Committee of Ministers today adopted a recommendation to governments aiming at ensuring that older persons fully enjoy all human rights and fundamental freedoms guaranteed in the European Convention on Human Rights. "I welcome the adoption of this recommendation which applies for the first time a human rights-based approach to the situation of all older persons, with a view to ensure that they enjoy their fundamental rights and freedoms on an equal basis with other people,” Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland said.
The recommendation sets out a number of principles to be followed and gives examples of good practices that can help governments adopt appropriate measures promoting also respect for the inherent dignity of the aged. The text adopted underlines the importance of ensuring that older people enjoy their rights and freedoms without discrimination on any grounds, including age. “They are entitled to lead their lives independently, in a self-determined and autonomous manner” reads the text sent to governments, stressing that this encompasses the right to take independent decisions on all issues which concern them, such as those regarding their property, income and finances, place of residence or all health related issues. Any limitations to these should be proportionate to each specific situation and provided with effective safeguards to prevent abuse and discrimination.