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Public being kept in dark over cost of ageing society, Lords warn

By Tim Ross, Telegraph

The public are being deliberately kept “in the dark” about the price of paying for Britain’s ageing population because ministers are too “weak” to tell voters the truth, a senior committee of Parliament has warned.

Six government ministers submitted a joint report to the House of Lords in which they set out what the government is doing to prepare for a doubling in the number of over-85s in society over the next 20 years.

But the Lords committee on demographic change said ministers had failed to grasp the urgency of the issue which could will have “momentous” implications for the NHS, pensions, housing and elderly care services.

The committee published a 100-page report in March after a 10 month inquiry into the impact of ageing on the long-term affordability of public services.

The report warned that society was currently “woefully underprepared” for the impact that a rapid increase in older people will have and called on the government to set out its considered plans for addressing the issue in a white paper.

However, the government’s official response to the committee contained no new policy details and no promise of a white paper.

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