Age Discrimination

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

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Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.

 

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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

AGE DISCRIMINATION

Date: 24th September 2013

AGE DISCRIMINATION

We’ve got rules up the ying yang about discrimination in all directions, but discrimination against Age is quietly left to wreak its havoc. Yes, I am very put out and this is not the first time that I’ve found myself either a ‘non person’ or found discrimination because of Age.

In the old days when I was earning a salary I simply couldn’t be bothered to shop around for ‘best deals’ – I tended to stay with a company if they’d given me good service. However, with the ever rising costs and a pension and savings going nowhere, I thought I’d better invest some time and the attendant frustrations by shopping around for Travel Insurance. I always had Annual Insurance when I was travelling a great deal but now that I rarely leave these shores, it seemed  an unnecessary expense.

So today I phoned the company I was with for many years and with whom I never made any kind of claim. One trip insurance was phenomenally expensive because of my age and I was unable to take out Annual because I’m planning to be away for over 30 days. Now I fully understand that Insurance Companies don’t want older people going abroad to avoid the winter, getting sick and then making big claims but when one is told that over the Age of 65 the days you can spend away are limited it is intensely annoying. And woe betide me if I get to the Age of 79 – then I’m uninsurable.

My son is not going to come back from Australia so, unless I can go and live out there, in another few years I would only be able to visit him if I take the risk of not having insurance.

I finally got Annual Travel Insurance with the AA for far less than the quote for single travel from my previous company which claims to be tailored to the over 50’s.

I wouldn’t mind but I weigh just over 8 stones, am 5’5” in height, live a healthy life and have never smoked but am lumped into an Age box. I daresay I’m in better condition than many people decades younger than I am but because of my chronological age, I am discriminated against. I notice that no-one asks for ones weight on any of these forms – that would be an indication of some of the risks for the insurer but that would probably infringe someone’s ‘’yuman rights’.

I would willingly submit myself annually for a full medical by an independent doctor if it would enable me to be treated as an individual and not a 'tick box' statistic when looking for Insurance etc.

There was some kind of survey recently which I was filling out and then at the end were the Age tick boxes and – you’ve guessed it – the boxes stopped at 60-65 so I have ceased to exist. My father is nearly 99, my mother 93 and though I have no desire to live that long, I think there’s plenty of life in me yet. I learned to ski at the age of 62 and wingwalked for charity at the age of 65.

Only one good thing came out of my endless time on the phone today – all the Call Centres were in this country and all the staff spoke English, were polite and extremely hepful.

Although I have no need, I have now discovered that past the Age of 75 one cannot hire a car.

So welcome to the club – we are discriminated against every which way. Someone said and I agree ‘Growing old is not for the faint-hearted’.

When I am in better spirits I promise I'll write up my Blogs about the superb visit to North Yorkshire and Northumberland.

What do you think? Send your feedback to contact@jan-leeming.com.