Debate Night audience member shares poverty concern
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A study by Independent Age shared exclusively with Express.co.uk has outlined the difficulties of poverty in later life. It is estimated that by 2030, around two million Britons will be ageing without children, and this could be difficult in times of hardship.
Linda, 77, lives in London with her husband, and until recently they rented a home privately.
However, after struggling with the cost of rent, they were able to move into their daughter’s small flat in London.
The arrangement worked as she was about to move abroad for work, and suggested her parents pay a small amount of rent.
Linda has said moving into their daughter’s flat has dramatically improved the couple’s financial situation and alleviated worries about unexpected costs or expenses.
She said: “We live in a flat which is owned by our daughter. She helps out.
“Our daughter lets us off some months if we can’t pay.
“We just pay her, not very much, but if there’s anything that goes wrong – we pay for that.”
However, not all older Britons have the support of children, as some are ageing without children due to a myriad of reasons including choice, infertility or circumstance.
Adult children can provide vital assistance for people in later life, reducing loneliness, providing care and support, or assisting financially.
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Those without children may find it more challenging, and may not have any family support to fall back on in times of hardship.
Suzan, 76, said her child was a vital source of support, adding: “My daughter is my greatest ally, bless her.
“If ever I’m short, I can borrow from her and pay her back. Not large amounts, but sometimes on the weeks that are difficult, when I have a lot going out.”
The charity Independent Age has called for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to help older people who are struggling with their financial situation.
They have suggested the establishment of an Older People’s Commissioner to hold the Government to account and ensure provisions are made for older Britons.
Morgan Vine, Head of Policy and Influencing at Independent Age, exclusively told Express.co.uk: “Our new research clearly shows that adult children can provide a lifeline to their older parents, both financially and emotionally.
“We hear from people in later life that have turned to their children during times of financial hardship, including requesting loans or being gifted vital items they cannot afford alone.
“Adult children can also provide help with applications for financial support, managing money, or they can seek advice and support on behalf of their parents.
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“But the 1.2 million older people in the UK without children – which will increase to two million by 2030 – must not be forgotten.
“The cost-of-living crisis is already having a detrimental effect on people of all ages, and this is only going to get worse.”
Ms Vine went on to express her concern for older people without children, stating they could have less options in this challenging time.
As a result, she has called upon the Government to develop a strategy to tackle poverty in later life.
This, she added, must also address older Britons who do not have any children.
Express.co.uk has contacted the DWP for comment.
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