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Minister Drabek opens the European Year 2012 in the Czech Republic

Minister Drabek opens the European Year 2012 in the Czech Republic

The European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations 2012 was launched on March 1st with a conference at Cerninsky Palace, Prague.

The event was attended by lead representatives of the Czech political scene along with members of various non-profit organisations and other stakeholders.

“Age is not an illness, nor a stigma. Senior citizens want to spend time actively; they don’t want to be a burden to the society but to bring assets. One of the criteria for evaluating the degree of a country’s development is how it supports its senior citizens,” said the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Jaromir Drabek, in his opening speech.

The National Ambassadors of EY 2012 were introduced during the event. All of them are prominent names of Czech cultural and social life, such as actor Kveta Fialova; Milan Klapetek, from the Institute of Life-long Education; sociologist Ivo Mozny; founder of the Safety Line Association, and Government Human Rights Commissioner, Marketa Simunkova.

Representatives of the non-profit senior-related organisations handed a memorandum to Jan Dobes, Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, describing some areas they would like Czech authorities to work on during this year. “This is a very important and valuable document because it came from the non-state sector. We commit to do our best to improve the situation of older citizens in all described areas,” said the deputy minister.

As a symbol of the link between generations, indie rock band Please the Trees performed a concert along with Senior Citizens Choir Elpida.

Pictures of the event can be seen here.