… to begin to see the writing on the wall – and to make sure they vote for the party that values and meets their needs in 2020.
We know the attitudes of the Conservatives Think Tank, they want to freeze pensions, take away bus passes, remove winter fuel allowances and cut care-allowances – they have been quoted as saying ‘they (senior citizens) will either be dead by the next elections or they will have forgotten which party made the cuts’. This demonstrates their lack of value of pensioners.
Already care allowances have been cut so finely that many people, including wheelchair users, only have 45 minutes contact per day – they are lonely, isolated in their homes, unable to dress or undress themselves to wash or get themselves in and out of bed, they have no one to cook for them, so they eat dry bread and biscuits and when they are hospitalised they are often told they have malnutrition. The government knows this - but does nothing – which is disgraceful.
The media, controlled mainly by Conservatives, is ageist in the language that they use about senior citizens. For example, they like to label older people as ‘bed-blockers’ and we know from the many surveys that have taken place that the elderly are treated as second class citizens, they are patronised and criticised, they get in the way because they are too slow for this fast moving world.
We are now bombarded with programmes about assisted suicide due to the loss of quality of life and the media appears to be moving us towards a time when this could actually become acceptable and normal practice for people who no longer feel valued. This government appears to want the old, sick and disabled to just disappear off the planet – they don’t want the hassle of caring or the expense.
With this government, unless you are rich your life is not valued and the older you get the less valued you become.
Jobs for life are becoming a thing of the past and re-training and regularly changing jobs is set to become the norm.
As we know, when people get older it becomes more difficult to obtain work, employers are more likely to choose younger people applying for jobs because they are less experienced and cheaper and because they are less likely to have time off sick.
When this government changed the retirement age to 68, the BBC coverage brainwashed us all with the idea that this was a positive move i.e. that people are living longer and that they actually want `the right` to work longer.
However, in reality we know that the older you get that when/if you lose your job, the chances of you getting another job or getting any well paid work dramatically drops and the chances of you getting sick increases.
Throw into the mix the NHS and public services possibly being privatised and the welfare state disappearing – and alarm bells start ringing as the obvious fear for our future starts to sink in. Private Insurance Healthcare is expensive, some medical conditions are not even covered and the premiums rise if you actually need medical attention and they become unaffordable.
This is the future the Conservative Party has in store for the working and middle classes as we get older and it is not a good one – unemployment, ageism, sickness & disability discrimination, poverty, food banks, no health care, no benefits, no services and not valued – and this could kick in as soon as we lose a job or as soon as we fall sick at any age.
For example, if you lose your job at age 45 - 50 and cannot get another job (and this is happening now) it will be 18 – 23 years before you are entitled to claim your pension. The benefits system will keep you in poverty. But even when you get to pension age the overall cuts will still keep you in poverty. If you then fall sick as well or become disabled, your life will be intolerable. In effect, you will be written off by this government the moment you lose a job and you are considered to be unemployable.
Voting should not be a matter of habit, not something you do because you have always done it. You should not vote for a party because your parents did or your spouse. You must vote for a Party which sees your needs, understands them and addresses them. You must vote for a Party which cares about you and values you – and that Party is the Labour Party.
When the elections come around in 2020 the Conservatives will once again tell everyone that they have their interests at heart - but we will have had 10 years of experience and bad memories by then to remember that once they are elected we cannot trust them - they do not care.
If you have always voted Conservative before out of habit, please think carefully before you vote next time – don’t shoot yourself in the foot and vote against your own self-interests - the quality of your life and others lives depends on it.