PAiL Newsletter May 2021

age news

Dear PAIL member 

Please find our PositiveAgeing in London newsletter with updates about our work and that of our age partners. As you will see much of our activity the last month or so has been around the elections for Mayor of London and the GLA Assembly. We have contacted all the main parties candidates for mayor and the assembly asking them to endorse the priorities which we and our partners in the London Age Friendly coalition have been working on for the last year.

We have proposed key actions around each of the World Health Organisation’s 8 domains which we want to be included in the age-friendly London action plan which hopefully will be proposed and implemented very soon after the election. After all, we have been waiting for this now for 13 years – since the first age-friendly London plan was written.

We have had positive endorsement from the Greens and Lib Dems and a couple of independents, but are still are waiting for a response from Labour and the Tories, which is disappointing. However, all the main candidates did in fact support in principle  Age UK London’s manifesto which we also support.

We do hope that with lockdown easing we can all begin to enjoy a safe summer, starting with going out to vote this Thursday!

Chris Walsh – PAiL Chair


We now have a new committee elected at the AGM and subsequent committee meetings which meets once a month. This includes Bridgit Sam Bailey and Tim Whitake as Vice Chairs and Carol Vincent our Secretary.We are happy for observers to attend these virtual zoom meetings especially if they have something specific to raise or to offer. We meet on the second Wednesday of every month Please contact us at  if you wish to be invited.


We are happy to welcome Cheryl Clarke as a volunteer who is helping us with our online research and communications. We are happy to welcome anyone else who wishes to volunteer their expertise to help us. contact us at  

Section 1 – PAiL Campaigns


PAIL is working in partnership with Age UK London and has endorsed their age-friendly manifesto just as they are supporting our London Age Freindly coalition key priorities. Please do use the action pack they have developed here, plus have a look at the replies that have been received by some candidates.

PAIL is actively seeking endorsement from candidates for mayor and GLA assembly positions (see our letter here) and have received a positive reply from the Liberal Democrats and also an independent candidate for Mayor, Valerie Brown of the “Burning Pink Party”. We have sent out reminder emails asking the main candidates for their support and thanked those who have responded positively. We will keep you informed as to who else supports the key priorities of older Londoners as and when they come in.

Here’s what leading Mayoral candidates have told AgeUK London about how they (if elected) would make London a better place for older people.

Here’s what leading Mayoral candidates have told AgeUK London about how they (if elected) would make London a better place for older people [link here]. The Green Party has also expressed their support for our Age-Friendly manifesto, with the email here: [link here].

Join One of our WHO Age-Friendly City Working Groups

PAiL and our partners in THE LAFF Coalition have set up working groups around the 8 key themes of the WHO Age-Friendly city template to develop ideas and work in partnership with the GLA, London boroughs and the London Recovery Board to make them happen. The main themes ( which also relate to the Missions of the London Recovery Plan ) are Housing, Health and Social Care, Employment and Training, Transport, Built Environment and Open Spaces; Communications and Digitalisation, Respect and Social Inclusion and Community Involvement and Governance. These groups have a group lead and meet fairly regularly and liaise with relevant boroughs, LRB Missions and the GLA / Equality, Diversity and Inclusion group. If you are interested in joining any of these working groups contact us and we will forward your details to the working group leads


Although younger people are seen as casualties of the pandemic there’s growing evidence that older people are suffering, and this includes in London. A major report by the Resolution Foundation shows older workers are being hit hard by the pandemic see:

Rising participation rates of 50-64s in employment pre covid have now declined. Once out of work, older people struggle more than younger counterparts to return to work; and when they do, they typically face a hit to their earnings. 

The report authors state that to help older adults back into work, the government should ensure that employment support schemes effectively cater to the unique needs – and often higher levels of experience – held by older workers. They should also consider the role of retraining and tax credit supplements for older returners to work. Pail in its age-friendly action plan is arguing for greater bespoke support for older workers facing unemployment in finding work, retraining, and support with financial skills.

Tim Whitaker


Older people have expressed many concerns about the growing trend of services being provided online such as GP consultations. The danger is that many who find new technology difficult, have disabilities or are not online can acutely suffer and be one of the growing numbers of digitally excluded. Early in the pandemic Pail lobbied hard for councils to address the growing” digital divide “to ensure older Londoners were supported with hard copy information. Now a select committee  Government should consider new health and employment rights to protect wellbeing in the digital world – Committees – UK Parliament

arguing that government should have a new Hybrid Strategy, which recognises that all aspects of our lives are, and will increasingly be, a hybrid blend of online and offline interaction and in particular this needs to happen in health. The report argues   the Government should undertake a review of patients’ rights in hybrid healthcare provision, including its impact on accessibility, privacy, and the triage between face-to-face and digital provision. The question for older Londoners will be how this works on the ground. PAiL will be monitoring the situation across London

Tim Whitaker


Covid has not only had a major toll on older people but is continuing to affect health through delays in older people getting the treatments they require including operations because of excessive waiting lists. New research is showing the scale of this and the problems it’s causing – the waiting lists have now reached the highest level since comparable records began. Longer waits, missing patients and catching up | The Health Foundation

Elective treatment fell further in the most deprived areas of England during 2020 than in less deprived areas. Further exacerbating health inequalities.  What’s also worrying is that there were 6 million less patients referred to consultant care – and these “missing “patients due for treatment add to the level of unmet need causing problems ahead. Many such patients are older people adding to their health problems. As London starts to develop recovery plans key in health and wellbeing must be how to tackle this growing scandal of waiting lists. 

Tim Whitaker

Make sure your vote counts on Thursday May 6

If you are voting in person:
Polling stations will have safety measures in place. Voters are asked to

  • Wear a face covering
  • Maintain social distancing
  • Bring your own pen or pencil

If you are voting by post: If you have left it too late to post your ballot paper, you – or someone else – can hand it in at a polling station on election day.

Section 1 – Partner’s Information

NPC Campaign Bulletin – Spring 2021

Seniors and the Internet

A Briefing written for the National Pensioners Convention, Digital Working Party
by Maureen Childs MBCS BSc

Age UK London Elections Manifesto 2021: An age-friendly recovery for an age-friendly London

GLF (Greater London Forum for Older People) – Newsletter March 2021

Silver Voices
Members Briefings

Fuel Poverty Action

Holding feet to the fire:  Peabody tenants confront unaccountable heating and housing management – April 2021


Make your voice heard on our online Discussion Forum
The new PAiL revamped website has a discussion forum for members. It is very easy to use: Go to the homepage The first time you use it, you will need to click on the ‘create an account’ at the bottom. Click on a topic to contribute to the discussion OR click on ‘Add a topic’ in the ‘Main Forum’ section to start a new one.


PAiL Newsletter May 2021

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