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Age Scotland is urging the country’s elderly to apply for postal votes to so their voices don’t go unheard in the first December election for almost a century.
The charity is concerned that tens of thousands of older people, as well as those with disabilities, could be disadvantaged if weather is cold or icy, or they face long journeys to their polling station.
Age Scotland has also launched its election manifesto, calling on political leaders to commit to tackling social inclusion, loneliness, and pensioner poverty.
The charity is concerned that Brexit could have a serious impact on health and social care for older people in Scotland, while stating more investment is urgently needed to help the almost one in five Scottish older people living in poverty.
Age Scotland will be distributing postal vote forms around the country to older people’s groups and have specially trained advisors ready to help with the process by phone. They are also encouraging people to help family members and neighbours apply for postal votes or ask if they need a lift on election day.
Brian Sloan, Age Scotland’s chief executive, said: “Many older people, especially in remote areas, may find it difficult to get to their polling station, especially if it’s cold and icy. Short days and winter weather can make roads and pavements especially treacherous at this time of year, while not everyone has access to reliable public transport.
“This year’s election will have a huge impact on major issues affecting older people from the future of the NHS to free TV licences. As Scotland’s population ages at a faster rate than the rest of the UK, it is vital that political leaders invest in tackling pensioner poverty, ageism, and loneliness, and helping everyone live well in later life.