30 July 2012
What’s in a name?
It seems that we could all be upsetting up to 97% of the older generation by using the wrong names to refer to them as a group. It has come to light that most are fed up of being dismissed as ‘the elderly’ or ‘pensioners’. A survey, conducted by retirement income specialists MGM Advantage, concluded that this generation would like to be known as ‘silver-surfers’ or even ‘grey panthers’. Other, more conventional, solutions included ‘senior citizen’ and ‘retired person’.
Michelle Mitchell, of Age UK, said: “The over-60s are an incredibly diverse group stretching across up to four decades as well as being ethnically and socially diverse.”
With the significant increase in our older population, it is increasingly important to take their opinions into account. The average life span has increased by a decade, meaning that 44 times more people are living to the age of 100 and almost double the number of people reaching retirement age each year. The retired nation now makes up 17% of England’s total population and is therefore a very influential demographic which needs to be heard.