Israel Elections: Yair Lapid unveils plan for helping elderly

Aims to raise every person over 60 out of poverty

Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid presents his party's plan for the elderly, February 7 ,2021 (photo credit: ELAD GUTMAN)
Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid presents his party's plan for the elderly, February 7 ,2021
(photo credit: ELAD GUTMAN)
Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid on Sunday presented his party’s plan for raising the elderly and all Israelis over 60 out of poverty.
He was accompanied at an online press conference by Yesh Atid candidates Merav Cohen, a former minister of social equality who is fifth on the party’s list, and Karmiel Deputy Mayor Tanya Mazarsky, who is 18th on the list.
“The aim of our plan is clear: No elderly person in Israel will live in poverty or loneliness,” Lapid said. “We want people over 60 to fulfill their potential.”
They key elements of the plan include increasing income assistance by NIS 1.8 billion a year, enabling employment of people over 60 who want to keep working, increasing the availability of care for the elderly and fighting discrimination against them with legislation and closer cooperation with the police and community organizations.
“We owe something to those over 60,” Lapid said. “We owe them our country. We owe them our security, our economy and our democracy.”
“Israel exists because of people who worked, fought, founded the IDF, built small businesses,” he said. “They founded our education system, our healthcare system, our industry and our culture. The generation of those who are 70 and 80 is the generation that defined the values of the country. They dealt with incredible challenges and achieved incredible things.”
Addressing the elderly population of Israel, Lapid said: “Israel needs you again. Your children need you, your grandchildren need you, and we need you again to help change the direction of the country and change the national priorities.”
Cohen, who put together the plan and will lead the work on it, said: “There are 1.2 million people who have incredible experience and are thrown by the wayside when they are far too young. We turn productive and creative people into dependents. That’s the cycle we want to break and to see the elderly population as an asset, not a burden.”
Mazarsky emphasized the needs of the elderly population who are immigrants to Israel.
“They often don’t even know what rights they have,” she said. “We have to ensure they get everything they deserve and are entitled to.”