Designated day for older persons
On December 14, 1990, the United Nations General Assembly designated October 1 be the International Day of Older Persons.
This was preceded by initiatives such as the Vienna International Plan of Action on Ageing – which was adopted by the 1982 World Assembly on Ageing – and endorsed later that year by the UN General Assembly.
In 1991, the General Assembly adopted the United Nations Principles for Older Persons.
In 2002, the Second World Assembly on Ageing adopted the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, to respond to the opportunities and challenges of population ageing in the 21st century and to promote the development of a society for all ages.
The theme of the 2014 commemoration, the 24th International Day of Older Persons, is ‘‘Leaving No One Behind: Promoting a Society for All’’.
Living up to the SecretaryGeneral’s guiding principle of ‘‘Leaving No-One Behind’’ necessitates the understanding that demography matters for sustainable development and that population dynamics will shape the key developmental challenges that the world in confronting in the 21st century.
Not addressing older persons means not addressing 20 per cent of the global population by 2030, where there will be more people over 60 than children under 10, with the most rapid change in age structures occurring in the developing world. The population of over 60s is expected to reach 1.4 billion by 2030.