Every second two people in the world celebrate their 60th birthday, and whether that's in your yoga class, your workplace or your retirement village, the stats soon add up because according to the UN almost 700 million people are now in this group. The good news is we're reaching an advanced age in greater numbers and in better health than ever before.
By 2030, just a bit over 10 years' time, there will be 1.4 billion of us reaching this milestone, making over 15 per cent of the world's population 60 or older.
The UN states that The International Day for Older Persons on Oct 1 celebrates the importance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), and continues to promote 'the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by older persons'.
Human rights lie at the core of all efforts in this regard, with the UN International Plan of Action on Ageing addressing many of the issues.
Like independence - Older persons should have the opportunity to work or to have access to other income-generating opportunities. They should also be able to have a say in determining when and at what pace their withdrawal from the labour force takes place, plus access to appropriate educational and training programs if they desire.
On participation - Older persons should remain integrated in society, participate actively in the formulation and implementation of policies that directly affect their wellbeing and share their knowledge and skills with younger generations.
About care - They should have access to social and legal services to enhance their autonomy, protection and care and be able to enjoy human nights and fundamental freedoms when residing in any shelter, care or treatment facility, including full respect for their dignity, beliefs, needs and privacy and for the right to make decisions about their care and the quality of their lives.
Dignity - Older persons should be able to live in dignity and security and be free of abuse; treated fairly regardless of age, gender, racial or ethnic background, disability or other status, and be valued independently of their economic contribution.