That Age Old Question

RSPH has published a new report examining how attitudes to ageing can affect our health and wellbeing

The findings of our new report That Age Old Question reveal that ageist views are held across the generations, and that an ageing society is viewed by many as a challenge rather than an opportunity. We are making a number of recommendations aimed at addressing some of the key drivers and negative consequences of societal ageism.

What we're calling for

  • Bringing services such as nurseries, youth clubs, and care homes under the same roof
  • Positive ageing to be addressed within schools
  • Employers and government to support employee wellbeing and resilience in preparation for later life
  • Employers and government to promote age diversity in workplaces
  • Healthcare professionals to be trained on the effects of ageism in clinical and care settings
  • An independent review of the representation of older people in the media
  • The Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) to include “age” in the Editors’ Code of Practice as a characteristic by which journalists must not discriminate
  • Facebook to include “age” as a protected characteristic in its community standards on hate speech
  • An end to the use of the term “anti-ageing” in the cosmetics and beauty industries


Read the full appendix from the report here. 

Two thirds

of the public have no friends with an age gap of 30 years or more

Of the 18-34 year olds asked


of them believe it is "normal for older people to be unhappy and depressed"

30% of the public

believe "being lonely is just something that happens when people get old"

Key facts