At the invitation of the Provincial Protector of Citizens, on Thursday, 3 March 2022, representatives of the Red Cross of Serbia participated in a panel discussion entitled “Obligations towards parents: are they forgotten?” Natasa Todorovic, Red Cross of Serbia expert emphasized intergenerational solidarity from the perspective of the whole life cycle and the importance of understanding this concept.

“It is important to understand that we live in a world characterized by demographic aging, demographic transition, urbanisation, change of family structure, and accelerated development of new technologies. Intergenerational solidarity has several facets and is important for all generations and certainly not something that refers only to families, it should be the obligation of the community but also the state. If we look at intergenerational solidarity from the perspective of an older person, each of us individually has our own expectations about who will take care of us when we grow old. Is caring for older persons an obligation of the family only, because it turns out some older persons do not have children, while some children are not able to take care of their older parents, some children take care remotely, and then there are extreme cases of children who do not want to take care about their parents? That is why we need legal frameworks and mechanisms that would enable older persons to exercise their rights to protection and care. It is necessary to help family members to take better care of their older members. How to do you take good care of someone whose well-being depends on you, and you have not received training, support service, day off, or information you need to provide better quality care services? We need to prepare for older age, so that we keep in mind that aging does not only happen to someone else, aging also happens to us and human rights of the older persons today are the human rights of us all tomorrow.

If we ignore this truth as individuals, as a community and as a state, we will not be able to build a society based on solidarity, tailored to all generations, in which parents provide care to children and adult children provide care to their older parents. We need multisectoral cooperation at all levels, we need greater inclusion of older persons in society and the opportunity to have their voices heard,” said Natasa Todorovic, expert of the Red Cross of Serbia.