Dundee’s councillors spoke with one voice last night to call for Frank’s Law to become a reality.
They committed to asking Scotland’s leaders to introduce a fairer system of care for under-65s after an emotional plea from Amanda Kopel.
The widow of Dundee United legend Frank Kopel watched her childhood sweetheart wither in his prime after he was struck down by dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
His age then just 59 meant that he was not given the support older Scots with degenerative illnesses receive.
That meant that his last few years until his death in April of last year were a constant battle for the couple.
“This is the most horrific death to watch, no matter whether you are 45 or 75,” Amanda told councillors.
“Frank was a very fit former footballer, always exercising and rarely ill, so we were plunged into a world that was totally alien to us.
“These dreadful diseases robbed him of his mind, control over his body and his dignity and finally robbed him of his life.
“In the days after Frank died I could have decided not to carry on, as it was too late for him, but I could not sit by and not help those without a voice.
“Dementia is a disease of the brain and is no respecter of age. Any one of us could be struck down tomorrow, next week, next month, next year.”
Following her passionate plea, Amanda emerged from the City Chambers with a promise to back her fight for Frank’s Law.
Through it she hopes to end the “discrimination” that sees care offered to over-65s with degenerative conditions that is denied to younger Scots.
Of the 85,807 dementia sufferers in Scotland, 3,201 are under the age of 65 and therefore not entitled to free personal care.
The same situation affects those who suffer from conditions such as motor neurone disease and Parkinson’s.
Dundee City Council praised Amanda for her “tireless campaigning”.