MONTREAL – What do English-speaking seniors in Quebec need?
It’s a big question a research project conducted by Seniors Action Quebec set out to answer.
Through its research, the group identified four major issues that Anglophone seniors across the province face.
The project consulted with 270 seniors, holding 17 focus groups in 17 different communities.
Those consulted said they’d like a one-stop shop to be able to find more information in their own language.
“We have requests that the regional association become a clearing house for information so that the seniors will be able to refer to our website, our e-bulletins and our newsletters,” said Brian Rock, the executive director of the Regional Association of West Quebecers, located in the Outaouais area.
Transportation and health care are also top concerns.
With cuts in the health care system, Seniors Action Quebec insisted many older Quebecers are feeling left out.
“It’s causing chaos and it’s causing a lot of fear,” saidDr. Joanne Pocock, lead researcher for the project.
“There is a sense we have lost services that we once had and we don’t know where to go now.”
Those involved in the project also noted the elderly need more support to continue living in their own homes.
“We need more residences, we need more health care,” said president of Seniors Action Quebec Ruth Pelletier.
“We need more support for caregivers.”
The project has outlined an action plan it hopes to present to all levels of government in the hopes of getting enough funding to carry them through.
“A street worker for seniors who can sensitize and find out where the ones that are depressed and isolated or not getting involved are,” said Pelletier.
“Coordinating services for support in their home or to get them to medical appointments.”
According to the group’s numbers, there are 268,696 English-speaking seniors in the province, making up about 25 per cent of the Anglophone population.
It’s a group that’s larger than the province of Prince Edward Island, where the total population equals 146,283.
Most English-speaking seniors live in the Montreal area, but those who live in the regions are widely dispersed.