BBC to consult NPC after over 75s free licence summit with new Director General Tim Davie
The BBC will meet with the National Pensioners Convention to better understand issues around a raft of concerns affecting the UK’s oldest and most vulnerable.
NPC will continue to brief the BBC on our views on the state pension, universal entitlements, the threshold for pension credit and diversity and inclusion.
The BBC has also agreed to discuss the impact of loneliness, isolation and increasing ageism with the NPC, the UK’s largest campaigning organisation run for and by older people.
The news follows an initial meeting between BBC Director General Tim Davie, BBC Director, Policy Clare Sumner, and NPC General Secretary Jan Shortt, who made a case for reinstatement of free TV licences for all over 75s, while outlining the financial hardships many currently face.
Jan Shortt commented, “The meeting with the BBC was robust on both sides – there are still approximately 1.4 million over 75s who have not paid their licence, because they are perhaps financially struggling to do so. However, we welcome the BBC’s willingness to continue a dialogue with us, particularly on the poverty, isolation and loneliness faced by so many older people.”
“The NPC has always believed the free TV licence is part of a wider package of universal entitlements and concessions for older people that should be the responsibility of the government and not the BBC. As part of new campaign to save all concessions for older people – from the free bus pass to the heating allowance, as well as the need to raise the pension credit threshold - the NPC will now be writing to the government and all MP’s as a matter of urgency.
“In the meantime, we look forward to meeting with BBC on major issues of deep concern to both organisations.”