Friday 12 February 2010

The Elderly and The Bank of England

Many ACEVO members are involved in third sector organisations that work with and for the elderly. There is disgust among them at the recent political games that have been played by the parties on home care for the elderly.

We know that the best care is often that provided at home and we need to empower charities and community organisations to be at the forefront of such care. We know that there are increasing costs involved in an ageing population.

I have a dear but aged Great Aunt Marjorie, now 96, but determined she will remain at home, though needing much care. And why should she not. Packing our elderly off to homes has always struck me as an uncivilised way to treat older people.

So the Government have been right to argue for more care at home and to look to promote this. I think the promise made by the PM that people should have the right to care at home is correct. It is clear that details are hazy and financing unworked out and problematic. But the right approach was to seek cross Party support and so the talks between the three parties were the right way forward.

The distasteful Tory poster was insulting to all those who are trying to find a better way of caring for the elderly. Members have been horrified by that poster and how this issue has been turned into a political football between the Parties. It means rational debate on the serious issue of how we pay for an ageing population now goes out of the window.

Last night's book launch for my sister's 14th was a jolly affair. The Vice Dean of the Institute of Education spoke. He made an impassioned plea for the importance of professional development. He said we must all take this seriously. Our economy depends on the growth of knowledge and skills. He says that to anyone who suggests they do not have time for personal development that they do have time; it's just they decide to prioritise something else. How right that is!

And lots of Bubbs. My talented and beautiful nephew and niece appeared; the twins Oliver and Miranda.

Oliver appeared hot foot with news. His school team of four, from Dulwich College, are through to the Finals in the, "Point 2.0" competition held by The Bank of England.

In the semi finals, the teams of four students took on the role of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee and made a presentation to a panel of Bank of England judges. Each team assessed economic conditions and the outlook for inflation and then decided what level of interest rate, or other monetary policy measures, was necessary in order to meet the Government’s inflation target of 2.0%.

Good luck for the finals on March 19th at the Bank of England. A glorious £10,000 prize awaits. And a tour of the Gold Vaults.

I am relying on Oliver, who is going up to Brasenose in October (Oxford naturally) to pursue his career in this economic path and end up as Governor of The Bank of England, thus being able to afford to look after his aged Uncle in the style to which he has become accustomed! I have no intention of descending into anything other than a disgraceful old age, fortified by the finest of fine wines. So make sure you win Oliver; a charity pension will not suffice me in my old age.

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