What role do senior citizens have in European society in the late twentieth century? Retirement is no longer the straightforward entry point to old age it once was. More and more people throughout Europe are leaving the labour force in different ways. At the same time older people are living longer and healthier lives, forcing back the threshold of frailty. This book presents findings from recent policy oriented research undertaken by the EU's Observatory on Ageing and Older People; the most definitive account to date of socio-economic policies affecting older people and the extent of their social integration in European society.
The book also presents the results from a specially commissioned Eurobarometer survey of public attitudes to ageing and older people conducted in twelve European Union countries. Overall it provides a unique and comprehensive portrait of how older people are perceived by the general public in the EU and how they view themselves and the ageing process.
The book criticizes European countries for failing to come to terms with the fact of societal ageing and challenges them and the EU itself to ensure the social integration of older people.