This Sunday, June 15, is World Elders Abuse Awareness Day. Here is something that you may not know:
Many seniors are putting their health at risk because they can’t afford to go down-Island to see their doctor.
Seniors sometime go for days without eating because, after rent and bills, they only have little to spend on food. Some can’t go to a food bank because they are on special diets.
Seniors often get stuff and money stolen from them by people they know and trust.
Some seniors that have a little money saved up sometimes have to deal with family members trying to take power of attorney over their life. Sad but true.
Seniors face lots of barriers where housing is concerned in our community.
Seniors go without their prescriptions because of lack of money.
Seniors should not have to go through that kind of stress. Most work very hard to put in place many of the things that kids would need after they graduate — student loans, housing at university and much more — so that we can become professionals. Yet their pension has not had an increase in years. Their voices don’t get heard.
Next time you see a senior say hi, hold the door open for them, ask if you can help put their groceries in the car. Take twenty minutes on a weekend and call a couple of seniors that you know and say hi and ask how they doing. Or you can volunteer with the North Island Crisis Centre to help through Better at Home (contact Pat Horgan). We need all kinds of people.
If you know of an elder being abused, do something about it by getting in touch with the RCMP or me or your local responder in your community. All of the First Nation bands on the North Island have a responder; you can get their names at your band office.
Let’s put a smile on seniors’ faces together.
Thank you for taking the time to read this message.
J Eddy Lagrosse
Port Hardy Responder
BC Association of Community Respond Networks