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Activities of the Office of the Seniors Advocate

Seniors Advocate Message on B.C. Seniors’ Week

Since becoming B.C.’s second Seniors Advocate in March, I’ve been travelling throughout the province and had the privilege of meeting with hundreds of seniors in both rural and urban communities. I’ve been amazed at the amount of volunteerism and support seniors provide for other seniors.

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New OSA Report to be Released during Seniors’ Week

The Seniors Advocate will be releasing a new report this week on his findings from a tour across the province to meet with seniors and seniors’ services providers and hear about their issues and concerns. The media presentation will be livestreamed on the OSA YouTube channel when the report is released. Stay tuned to our social media channels for more information.

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Spring OSA Council of Advisors Meeting

The OSA Council of Advisors met at the beginning of May to discuss seniors’ issues and celebrate ten outgoing council members. Thank you to these dedicated seniors for sharing their expertise, experience and knowledge with our office for more than five years!

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Current Issues and Resources

Property tax deferral may help B.C. senior homeowners with rising cost of living

Seniors Advocate Dan Levitt encourages senior homeowners struggling with increased cost of living to consider applying for the BC Property Tax Deferment Program this year. Eligible B.C. homeowners 55+ could save up to $400 or more each month, which could be spent on maintenance, utilities, or other household expenses. The best time to apply is after receiving a property tax bill and before taxes are due.

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Celebrate Connections Between Generations

Intergenerational Day, held on June 1, is an opportunity for British Columbians of all ages to celebrate the benefits of building relationships across generations. Find out about intergenerational activities and ongoing programs in your area.

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National Webinar Event for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

People of all ages are invited to join a free webinar to honour World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) and the national campaign ‘Age with Attitude’. The webinar will feature a panel of experts on ageing and discuss combatting ageism, promoting intergenerational partnerships, and developing policies to prevent violence and abuse of older persons. The webinar takes place on June 12, 2024, at 9:30 a.m.

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New Public Guardian and Trustee of BC Website

The Public Guardian and Trustee of BC has launched a new, fully accessible website that features convenient and secure online services. Services include online referrals, legal submissions, and private committee submissions.

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Provincial News

Recent Announcements from the B.C. Government Impacting Seniors

May 31, 2024 Province taking action to help people stay safe, cool
May 17, 2024 More than 325 new below-market homes underway in Port Moody
May 14, 2024 Sixty temporary homes open in Kelowna for people experiencing homelessness
May 10, 2024 More than 150 affordable homes coming to Burnaby
May 10, 2024 New affordable homes coming for Williams Lake seniors
May 9, 2024 New tools will help people prepare, stay informed during emergencies
May 9, 2024 Parliamentary secretary’s statement on Family Caregiver Month
May 9, 2024 Urgent and primary care centre opens in Langley
May 6, 2024 Minister’s statement on National Nursing Week
May 2, 2024 Secondary suite program launches, creating thousands of more affordable homes for people
May 1, 2024 New supports for allied health, clinical support workers will boost workforce

National News

Recent Announcements from the Federal Government Impacting Seniors

May 22, 2024 Two million Canadian seniors approved for the Canadian Dental Care Plan
May 1, 2024 1 million seniors can now access services under the Canadian Dental Care Plan
May 16, 2024 Government of Canada funds 3,451 projects across Canada to make life better for Canadian seniors

Recent Research

Tackling late-life homelessness in Canada

(Canadian Medical Association Journal)

Many older adults experience homelessness in Canada, yet current shelters and temporary housing are not designed or resourced for them. We outline the magnitude of this large and growing public health and social challenge, describe the social and health care needs of older adults experiencing homelessness, and suggest potential solutions.

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You’ve Got E-Mail: A Pilot Study Examining the Feasibility and Impact of a Group-Based Technology-Training Intervention Among Older Adults Living in Residential Care

(Cambridge University Press)

Older adults living in residential care often experience challenges in sustaining meaningful social relationships, which can result in compromised health and well-being. Online social networking has the potential to mitigate this problem, but few studies have investigated its implementation and its effectiveness in maintaining or enhancing well-being.

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Advance care planning in British Columbia: awareness and engagement (2012-2020)

(BMJ Support Palliat Care)

This study examines trends in advance care planning (ACP) awareness, engagement, attitude and experiences among the public from 2012 to 2020. This time period is of relevance as it includes provincial education initiatives. We also explored demographic characteristics associated with lower ACP awareness and engagement, to inform future initiatives.

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Outreach by the OSA

If you would like to invite BC Seniors Advocate Dan Levitt to speak to your organization or attend an event, please email .

The Office of the Seniors Advocate has an information and referral line that is available 24 hours a day, every day. Our senior service specialists will work with you during our office hours to provide resources and help resolve issues. Staff at BC211 will assist after hours. Call 1-800-952-3181 (toll free) for assistance.

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