Seniors provide feedback for national strategy
Minister for Seniors (through Ministry for Social Development) has been consulting on the development of a strategy to prepare for an ageing population.
Council communications held two sessions with some local Kaikōuran seniors, to find out about the issues they face both locally and on a national scale.
According to the 2013 Census statistics 19.5% of Kaikōuras’ population is 65 or older, compared to the NZ average of 14.3%. As a small provincial district, we face a number of challenges planning for and providing support to our growing senior population.
Community consultation following the 2016 7.8 magnitude earthquake identified ‘caring for the elderly’ as one of the key areas of focus for our social and community recovery programme. The ‘Reimagine Kaikōura’ Recovery Plan that was developed post-earthquake includes a goal of ‘encouraging the private sector to establish a retirement village and dementia care facility’. Discussion about how best to progress this goal are ongoing, with challenges identified around funding, site availability and other areas.
Kim (Community Communications) held two sessions with a total of 20 local seniors to gather some ideas and issues that Kaikōura's seniors are faced with.
Key identified issues in this submission were:
- A lack of housing for seniors (residential village/assisted living)
- Lack of housing for younger generation (seniors not leaving their homes and market not freeing up)
- Accessibility/mobility issues around a lack of handrails/depth and quality of guttering
- Lack of resident professional services/people in Kaikōura
- Parking issues (not great layout and high volume in summer)
- Long-term residents having to pay increased rates when their level of income doesn’t change.
There were a number of more local issues that arose, which will help provide Council with some ideas on how to better cater to our local seniors.
Council would like to say thanks to everyone who took part in the sessions - it is great to have such a passionate community willing to have their voices heard on the things that matter the most.
There will be more consultation happening on this strategy in early 2019. If you have any questions about the submission, contact Kim here.
27 August 2018