Elpida calls for the creation of a European crisis help line for older people

For the last two years, Elpida has been advocating for the creation of a single harmonized crisis help line for older people across the EU. AGE Czech member is inviting members of AGE and other ageing advocates to seize the momentum of the Czech EU Presidency to support their call.

Elpida-HelpLine-FBpost-2022 A European Commission Decision of 2007 states that the national numbering range beginning with “116” should be dedicated to harmonized services of social value. In line with that decision, the Czech Republic has proposed to the EU Commission to designate a new 116 100 number for nationwide free-of-charge older citizens’ helplines. This would allow older citizens all over the Union, including travelers and disabled users, to reach services of social value designed precisely for their needs by using one, harmonized, easily-to-remember, number.

Following Elpida’s call, the Czech Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs took over the enforcement of this initiative within the framework of the Czech Presidency in the EU. Minister Jurečka recently sent a letter I which he expresses his support for the plan and calls on the other ministers of the EU member states to do the same.

How can you support?

Elpida invites you to support its advocacy work by sharing and supporting their Facebook post.

Alternatively, you can contact your elected Member of the European Parliament (MEP) with a request to support this initiative. Here is a template letter (in Word) that you may want to use for that purpose.

Why targeting older people in particular?

The purpose behind Elpida’s request is twofold:

  • A significant number of seniors do not use the Internet as a source of information and practical help in a crisis situation; this group of people can be threatened by a lack of information and sources of practical help or through fake news.
  • In a serious crisis situation, seniors often do not have a close person they can ask for help. The absence of social support significantly reduces the ability to effectively manage a crisis situation. With decreasing mobility, the quality of contacts with peers decreases.

There is already a single telephone number for children at risk or victims of domestic violence.

You can find more information (in Czech) here

For further information, you can also contact katerina.bohata@elpida.cz

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