AGY-1651 | Office of Aged Services (1983-1988) / Office on Ageing (1988-1995)

NSW State Archives Collection
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The origins of the Office on Ageing are connected with the New South Wales Government sponsorship of Senior Citizens’ Week. A voluntary organisation, the New South Wales Council on the Ageing, had been conducting an annual exhibition at the Sydney Town Hall since the late 1950’s, which became known as Senior Citizens’ Week. Government sponsorship of these activities commenced in 1978, with funding provided through the Department of Youth and Community Services (1).

The Office of Aged Services was established within the Premier’s Department in 1983 (2). In May 1988 it was renamed the Office on Ageing (3) and soon after the first Minister Assisting the Premier on the Aged was appointed. (4) The Agency was transferred to the Department of Community Services from Premier’s Department in June 1991 (5) and in March 1992 it was incorporated into the newly established Ministry of Health & Community Services (6). However, after a departmental restructure in July 1992, it appears that the Office was placed within the Social Policy Directorate, together with the Office on Social Policy and the Office on Disability under the Department of Community Services (7).

The main functions of the agency were:

1. Consultation with the ageing in the community;
2. Policy advice to Government;
3. Program development for ageing persons;
4. Liaison with government bodies, commonwealth, state and local in relation to services for older people;
5. Fostering of community awareness in age-related issues through information services and community events, as well as encouraging the appointment of older people to decision-making organisations.

The Office on Ageing was abolished with the establishment of the Ageing and Disability Department with the first Carr administration (8).

(1) Premier’s Department, Office on Ageing, Correspondence files, 1978-89 [SRNSW ref: 12/13891].
(2) Premier’s Department, Annual Report 1987-88, p.40.
(3) Premier’s Department, Annual Report 1988-89, p. 25.
(4) Premier’s Department, Annual Report 1987-88, p.41.
(5) New South Wales Government Gazette No.101, 28 June 1991, Sydney, Government Printer, p. 5334-5336.
(6) Department of Community Services, Annual Report 30.6.92, p.28.
(7) Ibid.
(8) New South Wales Government Gazette No.39, 5 April 1995, Sydney, Government Printer, p.1865

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