In March, the Ladysmith Seniors Advisory Council (LSAC) held an informal meeting with Nanaimo-Cowichan MP Jean Crowder to follow up on issues raised at her Feb. 24 roundtable in Ladysmith.
Mayor Rob Hutchins and MLA Doug Routley were also invited guests.
Crowder told the LSAC that she is still in the process of compiling information from the roundtable discussions taking place at various locations within her federal riding.
Although Crowder has not been surprised by the similarities in the issues raised at these discussions, she has still come away with new and unique ideas, such as the Wheels for Wellness service offered out of the Comox area. Foster care for seniors, and simple changes such as timing at traffic lights were also mentioned.
According to Crowder, MPs from other ridings are holding similar input sessions, and although there is currently no Seniors Ministry, she feels there is a need for a comprehensive national strategy for this age group.
At the conclusion of the roundtables, Crowder will prepare a report on her findings. She has agreed to meet with the LSAC later this spring after her study is complete.
Routley was also asked for his input at the LSAC meeting. Routley pointed out that this constituency houses double the provincial average number of seniors. He felt the LSAC has a role in ensuring that local seniors are both connected with and made aware of currently available resources.
Hutchins agreed, suggesting that as the LSAC becomes more informed on the issues affecting seniors within our boundaries, we should share our findings with all three levels of government. His own concerns for Ladysmith area seniors at this time included transportation, home care continuity and increased counseling services.
On April 5, the LSAC had a special meeting with Hutchins to discuss transportation issues for seniors in the Ladysmith area. The mayor gave the committee a thorough briefing on the history, financing and major issues involving the trolley and shared some of the ongoing plans and discussion with BC Transit.