26 July 2023
While this provides many opportunities, the significant number of older people who are not online – estimated to be around a third of people over 75 – are at risk of being left behind and excluded from crucial information and services that support us to age well.
Issues relating to digital exclusion are frequently raised with me by older people, covering everything from booking health appointments to being required to use apps to pay for services such as parking. Other issues highlighted include difficulties accessing services, information and advice, and barriers people who are not online face when trying to make their voices heard.
To learn more about the kinds of issues and challenges older people who are not online or have limited digital skills are facing, I am inviting older people to share their experiences and tell me about the impact of being digitally excluded.
I would be grateful if you could help me to reach out as widely as possible, so I can engage with older people throughout Wales. You can help in a number of ways:
Encouraging older people who are digitally excluded to get in touch with my office to share their experiences (contact information below)
Sharing the attached pro-forma for responses (we can send paper copies to you on request)
Completing the online form [ https://olderpeople.wales/15162/ ] on behalf of an older person you know or work with
Displaying the attached poster in community spaces to encourage older people to get in touch with me
Including information about this work in any updates or newsletters you produce and share with older people or stakeholders
Sharing examples of good practice
Forwarding this information to any contacts who could help to reach out to older people
This will help me to identify any areas where further action is needed, and whether people’s rights to access information and services via non-digital means are being upheld, something on which I issued formal guidance for local authorities and health boards in 2021. You can find out more about this work and subsequent follow-up here:
With your help, I can ensure that the voices of older people who are digitally excluded are heard and their experiences are used to support calls for action and change.
If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact my Policy and Practice Lead, Sion Evans (email@example.com).
Many thanks in advance for your support.
Heléna Herklots CBE
Older People’s Commissioner for Wales
Tel: 03442 640 670.
Older People's Commissioner for Wales
Mount Stuart Square