Human rights of older persons were the central theme in numerous discussions among institutions for human rights from Europe and Asia, representatives from United Nations and NGOs, held from 19th until 21st September 2017 in Seoul at the 2nd ASEM (Asia -Europe Meeting), organised by the National Human Rights Commission of South Korea.
„Elderly in Croatia often live in remote areas, without proper access to social services – in poverty and social exclusion. We try to make an impact on their rights through the work in individual cases, policy advocacy, awareness raising and cooperation on national, european and global level“, said Ombudswoman Lora Vidović. Speaking about the state of human rights of older persons and discrimination they face in Croatia, she presented at the panel some examples of positive changes, for example an introduction of this vulnerable group in the Act on Protection Against Domestic Violence, and the announcement of the possibility for family members to gain the status of an official care giver to their older family members.
During her stay in Seoul, the Ombudswoman participated at the working group meeting of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI), where she presented the project on the rights of older persons in the long-term care. The Project of the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI), presided over by the Ombudswoman, was carried out in six European countries, including Croatia. „It was a challenge to identify the rights of older persons in the long-term institutional care since they are dispersed throughout international and regional documents, but they are not comprehensive. That is why it is necessary to adopt a Convention on the rights of older persons“, the Ombudswoman concluded.