On October 8th 2019, during its 136th plenary session, the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) adopted an opinion on Active and Healthy Ageing.
This own-initiative opinion was led by Birgitta Sacrédeus, member of Dalarna County Council in Sweden – a member region of SILVER SMEs consortium. Through the opinion, the CoR is recognising the importance of the Silver Economy to help older adults staying active and healthy, a key message when considering that people aged 65 and above represent 19.4% of the European Union’s population.
If the report is highlighting the usefulness of European initiatives, such as the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing, it also stresses the relevance of regional and local levels in developing policies aiming at improving the health and quality of life of seniors. “Regions for instance have a competence on health policies in 20 out of 28 Member States and can encourage the use of Silver Economy goods and services” explained Mrs Sacrédeus.
The CoR opinion stresses that “local and regional authorities play a pivotal role in designing and scaling up innovations that make life easier for older people” and can “turn the 'demographic tsunami' into a real opportunity to improve services to their citizens while stimulating their business community”. Regions can thus support older adults in our territories by developing policies answering seniors’ needs but also by providing assistance to Silver Economy entrepreneurs in the development of innovative goods and services.