CAPE TOWN: The country’s Social Development minister Lindiwe Zulu has tabled the Older Persons Amendment Bill in Parliament as her department seeks to introduce new age requirements and further protections for the elderly.
The main change in the proposal was to reduce the definition of ‘older person’ to 60 years of age – opening the door to further regulatory protections for older South Africans at a younger age.
Under the current regulations, a person is considered an ‘older person’ from 65 as a man and from 60 as a woman, but the minister wants both to move to 60.
“The proposed new definition ensures that all persons who are 60 years and older are equally entitled to the benefits and protections afforded to older persons in the principal Act, irrespective of gender,” the department said.
The bill also offers additional rights and responsibilities for pensioners, including protection from physical and emotional abuse, from both family and caregivers.
A significant portion of the bill also strengthens regulations around caregivers at home and retirement villages to ensure that older people are correctly taken care of.
Darul Ihsan Media Desk