International Conference on Human Rights of Older Persons 2023

29.11.2023 - 01.12.2023

Museumsquartier - Libelle | Vienna, Austria

The ICHROP 2023 takes place five years after the first conference in Vienna, which led to the adoption of the Vienna Declaration. The conference, which will be opened by the Federal Minister for Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection, aims to provide an international platform for dialogue for all participating states and stakeholders to discuss and prepare solutions for the "post-period" ahead of the conclusion of the "thematic issues" of the OEWGA in 2024.

The conference will take place over two days, with two thematic focuses. Each thematic focus will be presented by up to eight speakers and discussed in the plenary session.

The content of the conference is based on an update of the study "OHCHR 2012-Analytical Paper on normative Gaps" from 2021, co-financed by the BMSGPK. Andrew Byrnes identified "decentralized protection of older persons" in the human rights system as one of the most significant normative gaps. This gap not only symbolizes the structural disadvantage of older persons but also enables further age discrimination and human rights violations in various areas.

In Austria and the European Union, for example, "age" is only legally protected against discrimination in the workplace, with specific age groups being defined. Austrian anti-discrimination law does not recognize age as a ground for discrimination, and there is no European requirement to change this. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that older people have been significantly disadvantaged in terms of social participation, often under the pretext of health security. Alternative participation opportunities have rarely been offered or implemented, particularly in the digital realm, which despite years of civil society demands still does not adequately take into account the needs and abilities of older people.

Given current global demographic trends as well as the rapidly emerging technological and social innovations and standards, it is important to emphasize the need for targeted consideration of the needs of the rapidly growing proportion of older people in fulfilling SDG requirements for health and well-being, high-quality education, gender equality, and reducing inequality.


Focus Points

1. Fragmented protective measures for older people in the current human rights framework

  • OHCHR study update on normative gaps in human rights protection for older persons
  • The work and networking of the co-facilitators of the Open-Ended Working Group on Ageing (OEWGA)
  • Human Rights Council in Geneva

2. Living together in the age of digitization, implementation of the SDGs and lessons from COVID-19

  • Age discrimination
  • Social disadvantage due to COVID19
  • Digital skills
    • Right to information through digital media
    • Infrastructural gaps (urban-rural divide, home and care facilities)
  • Social Development Goals