Commissioner for Seniors
With its proposal to appoint a ‘Commissioner for Seniors’, COTA (WA) has called on the McGowan government to show its commitment to supporting older people in WA. The proposal is the central focus in the COTA (WA) submission to the Department of Communities’ consultation on the development of the WA Seniors Strategy 2022-2032.
The role of the Commissioner would be to provide an independent, prominent and influential voice to government on all matters relating to seniors. It would also be charged with establishing a presence in all forms of media to ensure that the needs, challenges and opportunities for this growing cohort are heard and acknowledged. If implemented, the role of ‘Commissioner for Seniors’ would go a long way in breaking down current endemic ageism and discrimination and promote awareness of the rights of older people.
Seniors Information Service
The COTA (WA) submission is also calling for the establishment of a ‘Seniors information Service’ to support older people, their family, carers or advocates to source information or seek a referral on all matters relating to seniors. This service would be delivered in multiple formats including telephone, email, virtual or face-to-face.
COTA (WA) is calling for a one-stop-shop ‘Seniors Hub’, which would house a range of seniors sector organisations and/or their shop fronts in one location. The Hub would hold educational classes such as computer and technology support as well as being a meeting place for social activities. The ‘Seniors Hub’ would also provide advocacy and support on a whole range of services commonly required by seniors.
Nine Key Focus Areas
In addition to the above suggestions, the submission urges the State Government to prioritise nine (9) key focus areas which have been identified by COTA (WA) as being of importance to WA seniors. These areas include:
- Overcoming the digital divide
- Supporting vulnerable cohorts
- Maximising social connectedness
- More support for seniors in rural and remote areas
- Overcoming ageism and discrimination
- Dealing with elder abuse
- Provision of more readily available information on housing alternatives available to seniors
The full submission can be found on the COTA (WA) website: Submission WA Seniors Strategy 2022-2032
The full Media Statement can be found on the COTA (WA) website: Media Statement WA Seniors Strategy 2022-2032
For More Information
Christine Allen, CEO Council on the Ageing (WA) Inc.
T: 08 9472 0104