SENIORCENTRIC WEEK ENDING Aug 14, 2021

Scanning the globe for news by, for and about Senior Citizens

Quotables:

You don’t stop laughing when you grow old, you grow old when you stop laughing.

George Bernard Shaw
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Grief and loss during the pandemic

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AgeCare says 87 per cent of staff in outbreak are fully immunized; 550 new cases in Alberta

Three units at the Midnapore facility are under lockdown after an outbreak of novel coronavirus cases began last week

About 13 per cent of workers at a southeast Calgary long-term care home experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak are not fully immunized against the virus.

In an email to impacted family members sent Wednesday evening, AgeCare said among staff at its Midnapore location, 94 per cent have had their first shot of vaccine, and 87 per cent have had both necessary shots.

Three units at the facility are currently under lockdown after an outbreak of novel coronavirus cases began last week. In total, five active cases have been confirmed at the site.

In the email, AgeCare said COVID-19 immunization is not mandatory in Alberta, but the company has made vaccination a condition for all new hires.

“Since this is not a legal mandate, this condition cannot be applied to existing staff,” the company said.

“However, the Medical Officer of Health has advised that during an outbreak operators may impose specific work instructions for existing non-vaccinated staff.”

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Seniors get cut off from Canada’s pandemic supports?

Cybersecurity course looks to protect Calgary seniors

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Extra pension payouts creating 2-tier system for seniors

Next week, seniors over 75 who qualify for the Old Age Security pension will receive a one-time payment of $500. 

Canadians born on or before June 30, 1947, are eligible to receive up to $626.49 per month in Old Age Security (OAS) payments, depending on how long they’ve lived in the country.

In July last year, the federal government gave all OAS recipients an extra $300, and $200 more to Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) recipients.

The GIS is a monthly payment for seniors 65 and older, and is based on the earnings of “low-income OAS pensioners.” The OAS is considered taxable income.

In its budget in April, the Liberal government announced that, starting in July 2022, the OAS will be increased by 10 per cent for seniors 75 and over, which will amount to $766 per month.

Older seniors are getting the one-time payment of $500 and the OAS increase because they’re more likely to have health problems and to pay “out of pocket” for health care, Seniors Minister Deb Schulte told iPolitics earlier this month.

“Many older seniors face more challenges securing employment to supplement their income,” Schulte wrote in an email. “Few seniors work beyond age 75, (and) are almost twice as likely to be widowed, adding further financial pressure.”

NDP seniors critic Scott Duvall says the government is creating a two-tiered system for seniors.

For younger seniors, Schulte said her government lowered the eligibility age for OAS from 67 to 65, and will increase the GIS, as well.

“What they have done is disgraceful,” Duvall told iPolitics on Wednesday. “We sent letters to the minister and said they were creating a two-tiered system, a junior and senior-senior group, and where they got this age (division for the bigger benefit) from is beyond me.”

Duvall said he’s heard from many seniors who are outraged by the government’s plan.

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Seniors most likely to suffer after federal generosity during COVID

“Now many old folks wish they had never heard the acronyms ‘CERB’ and ‘CRB’ because the amounts they received are being tallied and will count against any GIS payments they would have normally received over the course of the next 12 to 18 months.”

Considering the amount of borrowed money the Trudeau government has showered upon virtually every interest group beneath the hot Canadian sun, it’s tough to imagine anyone’s getting the shaft.

But dig deeper and you’ll discover one group is indeed going to pay, big time, for this seemingly endless deluge of free cash that has been handed out under the somewhat convenient cover of fighting COVID-19. (That a federal election will soon be called is, of course, totally irrelevant to such widespread Liberal largesse.)

Who among us will be left holding the fiscal bag? Which group will indeed suffer?

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Seniors are a staple of the community’s volunteer force

The benefits of volunteering for seniors may surprise you.

Seniors make up a large percentage of volunteers and are a staple for community groups and organizations. Researchers suggest that volunteering is linked to greater physical and psychological wellbeing.

Volunteering is just one way that older adults can remain actively engaged in and connected with those around them. Positive and active aging focuses on strengthening appreciation of the significant contribution older adults bring to our community, while optimizing opportunities for remaining healthy, independent and connected to those around them.

Studies have found that up to 15 per cent of the population lives with feelings of loneliness and over 30 per cent of older adults in Canada are at high risk of loneliness. To be clear, being alone shouldn’t necessarily be confused with loneliness. For example, many people enjoy being alone and live healthy, happy lives.

As some of Canada’s most engaged volunteers, older adults play a significant role in making our community stronger and a more resilient place to live. Volunteer opportunities can range from one-time, short term and longer-term time commitments.

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