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From: Judy Lear, former National Chair and UN Representative
Dear Gray Panthers Network Leaders:

I have the pleasure to invite Gray Panthers Networks to participate in a meaningful international action - to sign-on your Network's name to a statement supporting an international treaty to address Violence Against Women (VAW).  The Issues Committee has unanimously agreed that Gray Panthers be notified of this opportunity.  We ask you to respond to quickly to this email!

For decades, leaders in the international women's movement have worked to advance women's rights in every corner of the globe - and they have had many hard-won victories.  However, there is not a specific legally binding instrument on VAW. 

A newly forming group of activists, scholars, media expert, human rights attorneys have come together to work on a ban on violence against women and girls.  It is called the Everywoman Everywhere Coalition and has emerged from research at the Harvard Kennedy School 's Carr Center for Human Rights' Initiative on Violence Against Women, headed by Vidja Sri.  To see more, please go to their website at

The Coalition has been asked by Rashida Manjoo, UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, to submit a report of the work that has been done over the last 3 years, and she will present it at the 59th Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), which will meet in March, 2015. The Coalition would like to show its strength by having like-minded organizations sign a statement.

The sign-on statement for organizations is very simple and only provides public support for the development of a treaty.  It will read:  

We stand for the right to a life free from all forms of violence for every woman, everywhere.  We, hereby, join the global call for an international treaty on violence against women and girls worldwide.



The deadline for this statement is Sunday, January 25, 2015.

The Gray Panthers - Twin Cities network and the Gray Panthers -New York City network have already signed on.

I will be glad to be the point person for this important opportunity to support an issue that is close to my heart and important to Gray Panthers everywhere.  Please contact me at:

Judy Lear

"The best age is the age you are.”
Maggie Kuhn, Gray Panthers Founder


Please complete this short survey so we can learn more about how the world remembers Gray Panthers.

As we learn more, we can create our agenda, in part, referring to the priorities and recollections of Gray Panthers. 

The purpose of this brief survey is to gauge the current level of the general public’s awareness of iconic Gray Panthers organization, and to determine which issues related to ageism, the needs of older persons and/or social justice issues need urgent attention.

Thank you for participating in our survey. Your feedback is important. Feel free to circulate this survey to as many as possible.

Making patient safety a priority and protecting patients' rights.

As the current session of Congress is underway, Gray Panthers, NYC Network, is proud to support efforts to assure patient safety and patient rights for older persons and for all. Thirty (30) organizations signed on to the letter to New York's Congressional Delegation, urging them to make patient safety a priority and to protect patients' rights.  It's an impressive list of excellent, respected organizations!

A letter with an individual salutation was sent to each member of our Delegation (in both the Senate and the House).  

An example of the one that was sent to Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

The Liberation of Growing Old

LONDON — WHY do we have such punitive attitudes toward old people? Granted, the ancients did hideous things to elders who were unable to work but still needed food and care, but in more recent times, that had changed: In 18th-century New England, it was common for people to make themselves seem older by adding years to their real age, rather than subtracting them.

Once upon a time, “senile” just meant old, without being pejorative. Even “geriatric” was originally a value-free term, rather than part of the lexicon of contempt toward old people.

Yet today, the language used to describe the changing age composition of the population is little short of apocalyptic. We’re told that the “graying of America” is an “agequake” or a “demographic time bomb.”

Anne Karpf is a British-based journalist and sociologist, and the author of “How to Age.” 
Photo Credit Ed Kashi/VII Photo 

Read complete article here...

Helen Hamlin, at the UNITED NATIONS in New York.

Helen Hamlin at the UN in New York.

Sustainable development goals for all ages .  .  . dare we dream?

Although the Chief Executive Officer of HelpAge International wrote this blog, it is essential to note that Gray Panthers, through the efforts of Jack Kupferman, Frances Zainoeddin, Caroline Bernal Silva and Lobi Redhawk, is one of the core advocacy groups leading the Stakeholder Group of the Ageing Community for the post-2015 Global Development Agenda. The Gray Panthers delegation on this initiative, led by Jack Kupferman, has been a key player at every stage of advocacy.  There has been enormous progress. Yet, the end is not in sight. 

Our joint goal is to ensure the explicit inclusion of the concerns of older persons in the Sustainable Development Goals, scheduled to begin in 2015.  Global discussions and decisions are happening now. When the world came together to establish the first set of global goals (Millennium Development Goals which began in 2000) there was zero mention of older persons.  We want to make sure that omission does not happen again. 

 When Toby Porter speaks of advocacy in New York, he is aware that Gray Panthers works closely with many organizations with greater resources.  Gray Panthers leads by arranging and attending visits with diplomats from many nations, by drafting easy to understand language appreciated by the UN and by Member States so that the concerns of older persons might be easily incorporated into the Sustainable Development Goals, by strategizing with the core stakeholder group for the Ageing Community, by establishing personal links for further success, by being visible by speaking up at the innumerable meetings on the post-2015 Development Agenda, by taking advantage of momentary opportunity to persuade, and more.

 We have much to be proud of.  With hesitancy, we may be able to count accomplishments for the improvement of the quality of life for 800 million older persons and all those who are ageing. There is much more to do. We count on all Gray Panthers, and those of every generation to support these important efforts.

Tell us what is of most importance to you.
Help us form priorities and actions for the upcoming year.
Become more involved.

Do you want to get involved? Work with us at Gray Panthers, Age and Youth in Action toward a world closer to our ideals. 917 535 0457.

Jack Kupferman 
Gray Panthers, NYC Network
Tel: (917) 535 0457; email:

For the latest information on meetings, click here.

Our groups across the country work on issues from education to ageism, from political integrity to social security. Read more about our issues at

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