Newsbits for the elderlies

Nunavik elders raise voices at Quebec seniors’ parliament Last Updated: Monday, September 10, 2007

Four Inuit elders from the Nunavik region in northern Quebec will speak for the first time Monday at that province’s seniors’ parliament, in the hopes of raising issues specific to seniors in their area. Politicians in Nunavik have long lobbied to have the elders address the special assembly, which runs Monday and Tuesday in Quebec’s national assembly. They will speak in their own language and demonstrate the challenges they face as Inuit elders, including the lack of Inuit language in government documents. Currently, such documents are only offered in English and French.

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Is dignity at home too much to ask for our elderly?
Jo Revill, Denis Campbell and Amelia Hill, Sunday June 17, 2007

Hundreds of thousands of Britain’s elderly rely on home care visits to live a dignified life in their own house. But as local authorities reduce funding, an increasing number of our most vulnerable citizens are being neglected and are suffering as a result. Now, with our elderly population set to rise dramatically, we launch our campaign for the right to stay at home….

The Observer launches its Dignity at Home Campaign, to fight for the right of such people as Miss Tugwell to receive the care she needs in order to maintain a decent life in her own home. We have discovered that an insidious kind of rationing is happening in England and Wales, more covert – and in some senses more cruel – than the kind we read about when an expensive cancer drug is not prescribed by the NHS. It is a rationing that involves not giving baths to frail elderly people who are unable to clean themselves, cutting back on the daily visits from care staff, closing day centres, not visiting homes to ensure they have the right medication. No dramatic headlines perhaps, but home care is a lifeline for thousands of old people.’… More and more of us are seeing this indignity and disgrace inflicted on our elderly relatives,’ said Mervyn Kohler, director of Help the Aged [see sidebar]. ‘It is shameful that as people in such a wealthy society, we can treat our elderly in this way. The care services have been eroded to a point where they are no longer meeting the needs of people who really deserve more than this.’

read more Growing old

11m Number of pensioners living in Britain
20,000 Number of pensioners believed to be abused in their own homes and nursing homes every day, according to a report by Age Action
£2bn Amount of unclaimed benefit each year. Almost half of older people entitled to Pension Credit are not receiving it.
£21.50 Average amount spent each week by pensioners on food and drink
13 Percentage of elderly people who do not get out of their homes more than once a week
Tell us your stories, Write to Dignity at Home, The Observer, 3-7 Herbal Hill, London EC1R 5EJ or email news@observer.co.uk, placing ‘Dignity at Home’ in the subject field.
On the web
www.helptheaged.org.uk/
www.ageconcern.org.uk/

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Now the elderly will get equal rights Radical initiatives will benefit all older people Ivan Lewis Sunday June 24, 2007

As The Observer is rightly highlighting, there are few more important challenges than the way society treats older people. The realities of demographic change, the expectations of the ‘baby boomers’ and the values of a progressive centre-left government are all reasons why this issue must move from the margins to the mainstream of the government and public policy debate.

Equally, demographic pressures and a largely unreformed social care system are leaving too many older people with inadequate support. The quality of provision is patchy from service to service and area to area. People who pay for their own care are frequently left alone to make difficult choices and eligibility criteria take little account of loneliness and isolation. The current system was built in a postwar era when Alzheimer’s disease, elderly carers, scattered families and elder abuse were unknown forces. Today, 70 is the new 50. Older people view post-retirement as the next stage in their life; many grandparents are surrogate parents to their grandchildren; medical advances and greater affluence will continue to extend life.

This week, I will be launching a new national framework for the funding of continuing care, the intensive, long-term nursing care for the elderly outside hospitals, mainly in nursing homes. This will seek to end the current postcode lottery that has seen some older people wrongly denied NHS funding for the nursing element of their care…. [continue reading Ivan Lewis is the Care Services Minister]

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Sunday, 2 September 2007, 23:03 GMT

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How To Steal an Estate

…Identify Elderly Affluent People Who Are Alone – Target people who do not have strong family relationships, who are either estranged from their families and children or whose families live and work out of state…. Aversion to Extended Care – Targets often exhibit a horror of nursing homes and extended care facilities and have a strong desire and determination to continue living in their home until they die. If they move, your years of hard work may be wasted…. Alcohol Helps – Alcohol lowers people’s resistance, raises their susceptibility to suggestion, makes them relax, feel good and festive. It’s easy to manipulate alcoholics and make them angry and emotional… People Are Especially Susceptible To Suggestion When Sleepy – During those hazy, lazy moments when they are just drifting off to sleep or waking up. Visit or telephone when the impact of your communication will linger in their minds long after you finish. …

[continue reading Protection – Defense and other helpful pages]

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Retirement out of sight? Working past 90: 1 million elderly Americans still in work force By John Chrisoffersen The Associated Press Article Last Updated: 09/02/2007 11:35:07 PM MDT

…Manpower has urged companies to start thinking about ways to retain and recruit older workers, through flexible scheduling, for example. This will help them fill positions as the labor pool shrinks. According to Holmes, companies need to extend their diversity training to include age, as well as race and gender.

…Experts cite several factors for the growth, including people living longer and the Senior Citizens Freedom to Work Act in 2000, which allowed workers 65 through 69 to earn as much money as they want without losing Social Security benefits. Other reasons include the gradual increase in the age for receiving Social Security benefits to 67 and a decline in traditional pensions and retiree health benefits. [read more, They’re all younger than Waldo McBurney, a 104-year-old beekeeper from Kansas who was recently declared America’s oldest worker.]

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Oldsters Help Propel Wii to Number 1

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TOKYO TURNING GREY…By 2020, about 14 percent of the population of greater Tokyo — around 4.9 million people of a predicted population of 35 million — will be aged 75 or older. Currently only around 7 percent of the greater Tokyo area are in this age bracket.

Within the next 15 years, the bustling city that never stops will be one of the world’s greyest metropolises…. Though greater Tokyo does not yet have a clear strategy for dealing with its greying population, some other Japanese cities are already taking steps of their own. [read more By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO, Sept 21 (Reuters)]

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