Ageing International

, 34:102 | Cite as

Ageing in Australia and the Increased Need for Care

  • Mel GrayEmail author
  • Milena Heinsch


In this paper, we argue that the biggest challenge facing an Ageing Australia is care, specifically, the labour shortages in the care industry and the high demand for care, which exceeds the supply. We propose that this situation has arisen out of the extremely divergent discourses about the need for care, from feminist to neoliberal, managerialist responses. The aged care context in Australia is predominantly female, because women live longer than men, and 90% of formal and informal carers are women. We therefore see the continuing relevance of a gendered view of care and believe that the feminist ethics of care is a theory which offers much to our understanding of ageing in Australia. To illustrate key issues for older people and their families within the aged care system in Australia, a case study is presented and referred to throughout the paper.


Ageing Australia Care Ethics of care Gender Social work 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Australian Institute for Social Inclusion and WellbeingThe University of NewcastleNewcastleAustralia

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