Office of the Seniors Advocate Monthly Update – July 2023
Activities of the Office of the Seniors Advocate
New Report Release – It’s Time to Act: A Review of Assisted Living in B.C.
Following a comprehensive review of the province’s assisted living sector, the BC Seniors Advocate is calling on government to address the current confusing legislative landscape to protect seniors from significant rent and service fee increases, improve oversight and reporting, and address affordability challenges.
B.C. Seniors Week 2023
BC Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie and Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia Janet Austin launched Seniors’ Week 2023 with a garden party at Government House to honour local seniors who volunteer in their communities. The Seniors Advocate then traveled through the Okanagan and Interior regions to connect with seniors and their loved ones in person.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2023
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is marked on June 15 each year to raise awareness, prevent and respond to abuse and neglect of seniors.
OSA Long-Term Care Survey Update
As we get closer to our goal of approaching every resident in long-term care in BC, we continue to reflect on the mosaic of experiences that we are accumulating. Read about the experiences of residents, surveyors, project team members and care home staff.
Current Issues and Resources
Struggling Senior Homeowners Encouraged to Defer Property Taxes
BC Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie is urging senior homeowners struggling with the rising costs of living and aging to consider deferring their 2023 property taxes.
BC Farmers’ Markets Coupons
Farmers’ Market Coupons are available for B.C. seniors again this year. Each household enrolled will receive at least $27/week in coupons to spend on fresh food at their local farmers’ market. Markets do not give out coupons directly to participants. You must get in touch with a local community partner to enroll in the program.
BC Demographics Survey
B.C. residents are invited to participate in the BC Demographics Survey to identify systemic racism and other forms of institutional discrimination. The survey aims to make government services more equitable and inclusive.
COVID-19 Boosters and Flu Shots
The Province is continuing to roll out its COVID-19 vaccination booster campaign. Boosters are currently being offered to people in long-term care, seniors 80 years and older, Indigenous seniors 70 years and older, and people who are immunocompromised. Eligible individuals who received their last dose six months ago will receive invitation via the Get Vaccinated System
COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Tests
Free COVID-19 rapid antigen tests are available to people of all ages at B.C. pharmacies. No ID is required. If you are concerned about exposure to COVID-19, please consider asking people you will be in close contact with to take a rapid test before your visit.
Long-Term Care update
Visitor restrictions at long-term care and assisted living sites have been lifted, including proof of vaccination, rapid antigen testing and universal mask wearing.
Recent Announcements from the B.C. Government Impacting Seniors