The following email was sent to all the Municipal Candidates in Lanark County for which we could find email addresses:
Towards an Age-friendly Lanark County
The Canadian Association of Retired Persons, Lanark County Chapter 55 is interested in hearing from you. Although CARP Lanark is less than two years old we are 800 members strong and growing. We believe that collectively we can strive to be ‘Age-Friendly’ in Lanark. We also believe that positive change comes through collaboration and the sharing of best practices. Please tell us what is already happening in your community and how you feel you can build upon it.
Perhaps read the primer on Age-Friendly Communities below before answering the survey. The survey results will be shared in local media and on our CARP Lanark County website (http://www.carp.ca/category/community/regional/central/lanark-county/).
Thanks for standing for election and for answering our survey.
President, CARP Lanark Chapter 55
1) Recognizing that seniors walk daily to access support and services, visit friends and neighbours, and to stay fit, what initiatives would you propose to enhance your community’s ‘Active Transportation’ infrastructure?
[“Active transportation refers to all human powered forms of transportation, in particular walking and cycling. It includes the use of mobility aids such as wheel chairs.”] Transport Canada
2) What commitment of resources does your community put towards addressing public transit and how can this be enhanced?
3) Would you propose your municipal government use municipal resources and municipal lands to increase the number of affordable housing units for seniors? If so, what resources?
4) How does your community engage seniors and utilize their skills, gifts, and talents and how would you improve upon these efforts?
5) Does your community have a forum for discussing communication and information with seniors? How would you improve on existing efforts?
6) How does your community cooperate with health and senior service agencies in your area? How can these relationships be stronger and more effective?
What is an Age-Friendly Community?
In an age-friendly community, the policies, services and structures related to the physical and social environment are designed to help seniors “age actively.” In other words, the community is set up to help seniors live safely, enjoy good health and stay involved.
For example, in an age-friendly community:
* sidewalks are well lit and kept in good shape.
* buildings have automatic door openers and elevators.
* seniors take part in all sorts of community activities, such as visiting museums or libraries, taking courses or volunteering for charities or civic duties.
In 2006, the World Health Organization (WHO) developed the Global Age-Friendly Cities Project. This project brought together cities from around the world that were interested in supporting healthy aging by becoming more age-friendly. These cities gathered information from seniors, senior-care providers and other groups and individuals with an interest in age-friendly communities. This information helped to identify eight key areas of community life in which communities can become more age-friendly.
These areas are:
* outdoor spaces and buildings
* social participation
* respect and social inclusion
* civic participation and employment
* communication and information
* community support and health services
An age-friendly community:
* recognizes that seniors have a wide range of skills and abilities.
* understands and meets the age-related needs of seniors.
* respects the decisions and lifestyle choices of seniors.
* protects those seniors who are vulnerable.
* recognizes that seniors have a lot to offer their community.
* recognizes how important it is to include seniors in all areas of community life.