SPAG is affiliated to the National Pensioners Convention (NPC).  Two delegates from SPAG attend National and Greater London Regional NPC meetings and report back.  Members also take part in its demonstrations.

  • SPAG members play an active part and report back from other Southwark campaigning groups and groups taking action to protect older people's rights in Southwark.  These groups include the Southwark Planning Network, the Older Peoples Partnership Board and Age UK's (Southwark) Lay Inspectorate Group.  See about us for more detail.

  • SPAG  members have spearheaded the campaign to reopen the Maudsley Hospital's Emergency Clinic for the past 11 years and have also campaigned for better mental health services for younger age groups. see NHS page for detail.

 SPAG'S MEMBERS AT DEMONSTRATIONS.

 SPAG JOINS NATIONAL PENSIONER CONVENTION DEMONSTRATION AGAINST THE HIGHEST WINTER DEATH RATE AMONG PENSIONERS SINCE THE 1970s

30 NOVEMBER 2018

 



Press Release

For immediate use: 30 November 2018 

Call for Energy Minister to resign as figures reveal highest winter death rate among pensioners since the mid-1970s

Britain’s biggest pensioner organisation, the National Pensioners Convention (NPC) has called on the Energy Minister, Claire Perry MP to resign following news that the scale of winter deaths among the country’s older population reached the highest figure since 1975/76.

The call comes as official figures out today show an estimated 50,100 excess winter deaths occurred in England and Wales between December 2017 and March 2018. This equates to 417 deaths a day or 17 deaths an hour. During the winter months of 2017 to 2018, the number of daily deaths exceeded the daily five-year average for all days except 25 March.

The figures also showed that excess winter mortality in 2017 to 2018 significantly increased from 2016 to 2017 in all English regions and Wales, and those affected the most were females and people aged 85 and over.

 

Jan Shortt,  NPC general secretary said: “Successive governments have simply ignored the problem of winter deaths amongst the older population and seem to have a policy of crossing their fingers and hoping things will improve. Today’s figures show that this policy simply doesn’t work – and things are now the worst they’ve been for over 40 years. It’s time someone took responsibility and that has to lie with the Energy Minister.

Today’s figures are proof that older people are at the mercy of poor housing, rising fuel costs, shrinking pensions and colder weather. Using the government’s official definition of fuel poverty, around 1.4 million older people in England are at risk. In addition, almost one in three older people live in homes with inadequate heating or insulation making their homes more difficult to heat or keep warm. In total, this accounts for around 3.5 million older people at risk or suffering from fuel poverty.

The key to tackling winter deaths is to make sure older people have got a well-insulated, warm home and the income needed to pay the fuel bills. This is a basic requirement of what a decent society should do. We need a new minister who has the drive to tackle this national scandal and someone who can find solutions to this problem such as rolling out a more effective programme to insulate homes, building more suitable properties for older people, raising the winter fuel allowance and tackling the excessive profits of the big six energy companies.”

 

ENDS

 

For further information contact Neil Duncan-Jordan on 07432-575251

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A MESSAGE FROM TOM WHITE SPAG CAMPAIGNER ON MENTAL HEALTH ON WHAT CAN BE ACHIEVED

A couple of weeks ago a young girl of 16 with a severe mental health problem needed a bed, she was transferred to Manchester as that was the nearest bed available! The cost of the fare and food to the family was £60 per day! Because I know a SLAM governor after lots of pressure from us she was transferred to Bexley hospital yesterday,which is not that far away.

Dr Mathew Patrick of Slam has boasted he has saved £2.8 million last year through bed cutting! This is message we need to get through!

Best wishes Tom

30 May 2018

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SPAG MEMBERS JOIN NPC DEMONSTRATION OUTSIDE THE HOUSES OF
PARLIAMENT 22 NOVEMBER 2017





We joined other members of the Greater London Pensioners Association to release black balloons to remember those who died from cold related deaths, and were shocked and distressed to hear that this year there was an increase of 9,720 deaths, almost 40% on last years deaths.  In this, the sixth largest world economy 34,300 people died from the cold, that is 285 deaths a day or 11 deaths an hour. 

The causes of winter deaths are well known and are bad, poorly insulated housing, high fuel costs and not enough money to pay for heating.  Most of those who die are over 75years and the UK has the worse figures for the whole of Western and Northern Europe.  The UK also has one of the lowest state pensions in Europe. 


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SPAG MEMBERS KICK OFF FUEL POVERTY ACTION'S WEEKEND OF ACTION 13 FEBRUARY 2013
 


On 13 February 2013 SPAG members took to the toasty Royal Festival Hall on London’s Southbank, in protest against fuel poverty to make clear the injustice of pensioners being forced out of their own homes by the cold.

The reaction of Festival Hall security had to be seen to be believed: the police were called within minutes and a group of pensioners – sitting down with hot cups of tea and talking about how
they’re surviving rocketing bills – were threatened with arrest.


Having been forced outside we donned emergency blankets to keep warm with the EDF-sponsored London Eye in view.




Meeting on Fuel Poverty Action 21 November 2012





With the NPC at the Protest and Lobby of Parliament Wednesday 31 October 2012


SPAG has been in existence for more than twenty years, campaigning for better pensions and care for older people.  It has never been as important as it is today.

We are facing cuts in the basic welfare services which we have taken for
granted since the 1940s.  Major financial and political institutions
are in agreement that government cuts, which have been passed on to
local authorities, will have the worst effects on the poorest sections
of society. Millions of pensioners live in poverty and they will bear
the brunt of government measures.  Nobody believes the Government’s
cynical assurances that “we are all in it together”.  

It is important to bring more and more Southwark Pensioners together so we can join with other campaigning groups, old and young, to fight these measures and improve the lot of ordinary people.


News of SPAG's current campaigns can be found by clicking on the Newsletter and Diary Dates buttons