To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what plans there are to make unfair discrimination on grounds of age unlawful in Northern Ireland and to ensure equality of access and opportunity for older people. 
We plan to issue our proposals for legislation to tackle age discrimination for consultation in the summer. We intend that legislation will be made before the deadline of 2006 imposed by the European Directive.The consultation in 2001 on the general content and scope of a single Equality Bill asked some general questions about age discrimination. There are many complex issues to be addressed and we want to ensure that we take account of expert advice and comments in taking forward this work.
In addition to new legislation, Departments have a duty under section 75(i) of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 to have due regard to the need to promote equality of opportunity between persons o f different age.
We have also established a Working Group under the Promoting Social Inclusion initiative to look at factors which cause older people to be at risk of social exclusion. The Working Group will present Ministers with a draft policy and strategy document for public consultation, setting out clearly defined recommendations as to what preventative and other measures are required.