GLA Summary of Feedback from Older People re the London Recovery missions

Overview: Community Insights on Recovery Missions 
Focus: Older Londoners

Update to Recovery Missions 
The mission areas outlined in late July and included in the toolkit have been refined. The process of community feedback has informed the re-focusing of the mission areas going into the next phase. There is a wider ambition for health and wellbeing and some mission areas  have undergone a more detailed focus. This update will be made public next week.  Please ensure you are signed up to newsletters from the Recovery Board, Talk London and the Community Engagement team for latest.
Community Conversations 
– 78 Community Conversation summaries to analyse, engaging over 1000 Londoners 
– 18 conversation hosts identified older Londoners as their main beneficiary group 

Specific themes connected to Older Londoners; 

1. Older Londoner Perception shift 
Pivot the narrative to include positive experiences, advocacy of older Londoners doing well 
“It was felt that tackling conscious and unconscious ageism will greatly improve outcomes for older workers and jobseekers” 

2. Visible awareness campaigns for older job seekers 
Highlighting the value and skills older Londoners can bring 
‘Businesses to use older workers to mentor younger workers’ – Support managers and directors of all ages how to build a good relationship with older workers; and greater transparency in hiring practices.  

3. Supporting community infrastructure 
Role of libraries and social spaces as points of learning and connection 
“Many older people visited their local library to access pay-as-you-go computers before the library and were left without access during the pandemic when libraries were closed.” 

4. Impact of infrastructure updates on older people  
Rebalance of proposals to have more older community voice 
“High Steets meant accessibility, which was about feeling safe on the pavements, plenty of seating and resting places, accessible public toilets, support for disabled older people that rely on cars and shorter walking distances”. 

 Feeling safe from cyclists and e-scooters is a key concern and some felt that reallocating road space to increase cycle lane space caused traffic congestion and was detrimental to wheelchair users and others.” 
5. Digital Support 
Recognition of access and modified equipment 
“User-friendly websites in accessible fonts were identified as being particularly important for older Londoners with impairments and accessible equipment such as adapted mice for those with arthritis in the hand would make a huge difference. Simpler online forms would also make access to services easier.” 

Key themes across all missions 

A snapshot of Older Londoners responses to the key themes that emerged across all 

community conversations 

Employment: Flexible working options, a perception shift to champion the benefits of an older workforce and recognition of family support 

“An enjoyable role that suits my requirements and either uses my vast experience and competencies or where training is provided. Persuade employers of the value and commitment of older workers and offer them flexible hours so that they can support child/parent care.” 

Supporting Younger People: Businesses to use older workers to mentor younger workers 

Older People seen as digital innovators who can share learning. Flipping the narrative that older people need access and are excluded; 

“Broaden concepts about who are the digital leaders?  Elderly people are seen as digitally  excluded, but the current digital revolutions philosophers and programmers are now  ‘older people” 

Physical Health: Interconnects across to mobility and environmental issues 

“My council wants to make my street closed to traffic during school pick and drop off hours but over two hours a day. I will be able to drive through during those times but taxis won’t. I have a condition that affects my mobility and I have to go to hospital many times a year for steroid injections. I cannot drive on those days and need to be picked up by a taxi. There is nowhere for a taxi to drop me off near my flat. Sometimes I can’t walk. Sometimes my elderly father who also can’t walk comes to visit. He can’t control the time the bus arrives into London and arrives at school closing time. He won’t be able to be dropped off. He can’t walk with his luggage. This sort of road closure has not been thought through and disadvantages elderly and disabled residents. Not everyone has a car, my road is incredibly long and I can see that some elderly people will have difficulty getting out, including myself.” 
Support for small/grassroots organisations 
How can organisaitons advocating for older people feel better supported to continue this kind of participation 

“A cross cutting plan for older people in place across all the missions – steered by reference groups of older people organisations for each area of work/mission.” 
Local Community Activity 
“More inclusion in projects for older disabled Londoners and older Londoners that do not speak English as a first language. A move away from ‘digital by default’ assumptions that exclude people.” 

Wider Feedback 
London Community Response Survey 
This is a weekly survey which was established in the Covid response phase in early April. It goes out of over 180 civil society organisations. The response to recovery missions felt Older Londoners voices was missing; 

“After a lot of work and consultation input there is great disappointment in the lack of reference to the needs, concerns and ideas of older Londoners in the current planning phase of the London Recovery Plan” 

London Recovery Missions survey of Business Stakeholders 
Issued on 18 August, closed on 4 September. It received 52 responses. The survey was promoted to about 650 business stakeholders. In recognition of the childcare that many older Londoners perform; 
–  Actions to improve childcare affordability in London. Childcare costs eat a significant amount of household incomes and often impact on carers ability to work.    

GLA Summary of Feedback from Older People re the London Recovery missions
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