PENINSULA ZOOMERS: Plenty to consider as seniors cast votes

CARP virtual meeting outlined concerns about long term care

Oh promises, promises

I’m all through with promises, promises now

Maybe Dionne Warwick is through with promises, but currently, British Columbians are being inundated with promises.

There’s a provincial election around the corner and both major parties are making all kinds of promises.

As seniors, we want to know what’s in it for us. What promises are they making to us, the largest voting cohort?

On Oct. 1, 2020 more than 3,000 Canadians joined CARP’s National Seniors Day Online Event. October 1 marked the 10th annual observation of Seniors Day in Canada.

CARP celebrated with the largest ever virtual meeting of seniors in Canada with four regional breakout sessions, including British Columbia.

We also held a national moment of silence for the thousands of seniors who have died of COVID-19 in long-term care homes across Canada.

In fact, 80 percent of COVID-19 deaths occurred in long-term care facilities.

Politicians, are you listening?

The tragedy of these untimely deaths was the focus of our BC virtual session led by CARP North Fraser chapter president and dementia consultant and author, Karen Tyrell. Karen has been working in the long-term care sector for over 25 years. COVID-19 has helped shine a light on the many challenges happening in long-term Care (LTC).

The following top concerns identified in our LTC facilities during COVID-19 are:

• Lack of accountability and consistency for LTC providers (direct care hours)

• LTC homes should have “Family Councils,” but they are not being encouraged or enforced

• Staffing: number of staff; pay (public vs private); sick time; lack of appreciation

• Training: appropriate and ongoing (i.e. Dementia units – puts people at risk for injury)

• Impact of 14 day quarantine on resident’s mental health

• Wi-Fi currently not available in all rooms – should be an essential service for improved connections with family and friends

• Staff only able to work at one location (staff shortages and pay incentives)

• Reports of poor air quality and circulation in older LTC homes;

• Will our current frontline healthcare providers become burnt out?

Politicians, have I got your attention yet?

CARP is proposing:

• Respite for caregiving at home (comfortable “Respite Resorts”; more Adult Day Programs; affordable in-home respite)

• Family caregivers to have access to financial relief (Federal Tax Credit refund or a rebate)

• No CPP penalties for those who leave the workforce to care for a family member in the community.

Politicians, are you hearing us?

Karen would like to keep the conversations going so that we can do what we can to encourage our governments to make changes now.

She held two Zoom discussions earlier in October and CARP looks forward to reviewing the results.

She invites you to another Zoom online session which will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. entitled Dementia Safety Solutions for Families.

This online session focuses on keeping seniors safe and connected while at home during COVID-19 and beyond. This information session is ideal for family caregivers who are caring for a family member with dementia, and who live in their own home.

A Zoom link will be provided to registrants. Please register at:


Meanwhile the politicians vying for your vote on Oct. 24 are promising more LTC beds with eventually all rooms to be single-occupancy.

They are promising to train and hire more healthcare workers. They are promising more in-home care support to keep people out of LTC facilities. Building new hospitals.

Yada, yada, yada.


Understand the issues before you cast your vote. The life you may be saving could be your own.

April Lewis is the local communications director for CARP, a national group committed to a ‘New Vision of Aging for Canada.’ She writes monthly.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vancouver Police were at a White Rock home Oct. 20 to conduct a search warrant. (Aaron Hinks photo)
ERT response to White Rock home connected to homicide: police

Search underway in the 15800-block of Prospect Crescent

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Oct. 18

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Ivan Scott. (Aaron Hinks photo)
Surrey mayor enters word war with speakers, councillor

McCallum calls brief recess after asking two speakers to leave chambers

Signs at a new COVID-19 testing and collection centre at 14577 66th Ave. in Surrey. It was relocated from an urgent primary care centre near Surrey Memorial Hospital. This new centre allows for up to 800 tests per day, which is 550 more than the previous centre, according to Fraser Health. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Surrey’s COVID-19 case count exceeds 1,800

About 800 new cases in September

Montreal-based writer Michael Foy grew up in the Newton area of Surrey. (submitted photo)
Surrey-raised writer Foy really loves to set his short stories in the city

His latest is published in ‘Canadian Shorts II’ collection

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

Maple Meadows Station’s new Bike Parkade. TransLink photo
TransLink to remove abandoned or discarded bicycles from bike parkades

Rules at TransLink bike parkades ask customers to use facilities for single day use only

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

UBC geoscientists discovered the wreckage of a decades-old crash during an expedition on a mountain near Harrison Lake. (Submitted photo)
Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

A bear similar to this black bear is believed responsible for killing a llama in Saanich on Oct. 19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
RCMP cleared in fatal shooting of armed Lytton man in distress, police watchdog finds

IIO spoke to seven civillian witnesses and 11 police officers in coming to its decision

Most Read