Is it because I am a grumpy old woman that I am so impatient and frustrated?
At a time when reports after reports appear on the appalling way old people are treated in care homes, hospitals and at home …. At a time when social care funding and pensions are going to be cut do we have to be convinced that ageism is a feminist issue?
I have attended three big events about older people recently. I have written about the Social Care debate at the Houses of Parliament in my previous blog. The audience was an audience of older people. Helen Carr in her attack on Wolff declared herself a feminist but apart from OWCH, I felt that they were no feminist voice in the hall.
At the Feminista Conference there was no workshop about age, ageism and feminism. Yes there were some grey haired women in the audience and possibly one or two older women on the panels. But again there was no representation of old women’s groups.
Finally the think-in at the South Bank about the preparation for International Women Day 2012. I attended one of the three sessions and the representation of the old woman was not touched upon.
NO Feminist voice at an official meeting
NO Old voice at a feminist meeting
NO Feminist Old Voice at a cultural meeting
No wonder we are invisible not only to the general public but also to young feminists.
I know that old women are involved in all sorts of political campaigns from Peace to the Labour Party. They are present as volunteers in hospitals, hospices, schools and as support and main carers at home. They help in and run community centres, day centres. And yet we are invisible not only to the general public but also in feminist circles. I also know that our time and energies available start to diminish as we age. Am I unreasonable to wish that the young old feminists would join in an activist group as we did in the 80s and make our own voice HEARD?