Caskey appointed to seniors’ council

The seniors advocate council of advisers is a group formed by the ombudsperson to represent the needs of seniors.

Don Caskey

A local resident has been selected for a provincial council looking into seniors’ matters. Don Caskey is part of the seniors advocate council of advisers, which is a group formed by the ombudsperson to represent the needs of seniors and provide advice and feedback on the issues facing seniors in B.C.

“I was appointed in January,” said Caskey. “I had a notice come to me though emails and I applied in November. I was one of 30 people to be selected.”

Caskey has lived in Grand Forks for over 40 years and was a math and social studies teacher at the high school for many years.

Caskey said the seniors council, which is all volunteer, was started up by the seniors advocate (Isobel MacKenzie) for the ombudsperson, Kim Carter, who often found herself dealing with seniors’ issues.

“MacKenzie decided to strike up a council to advise her —  we’re called council advisors,” said Caskey. “We give advice on seniors’ issues.”

Caskey said the advisors are allocated based on the respective health authorities and are representative of the whole province. He is one of six people representing the Interior Health Authority region.

The senior council meets four times per year including two day-long meetings at a central location and two half-day teleconference meetings. The group met for their inaugural meeting on March 6 in Richmond.

“We spent the day getting to know each other and finding out what the seniors advocate is hoping we can accomplish,” he said. “Part of the meeting was coming up with some priorities for seniors in B.C.”

Caskey said the number one priority the council came up with was communication.

“Government offers several things to seniors but it’s not coordinated,” he said. “The ombudsperson pointed out that seniors sometimes aren’t aware of what’s available to them. It’s one priority that the senior advocate is trying to coordinate and get information for seniors.”

Another priority is help for seniors in rural areas.

“I happened to be in a group with other rural people and their issue is pretty common throughout the province—seniors getting to see specialists in small towns,” said Caskey, “even just getting in for simple lab work (without having to drive long distances).”

Caskey also mentioned that senior housing was a priority for the council. “Many seniors are on fixed incomes and it’s not really clear in terms of what institutions are that house seniors. The rules and regulations are governed by different ministries.”

Caskey said the council members were asked in which areas they are interested and will be placed into sub-committees for future meetings. The council will meet again in June online for a webinar.

“They want all 30 of us to let people know that we are around,” he said. “We can speak to groups, seniors and take information from them. That’s also part of the job.

Caskey said so far he has enjoyed his experience on the council although he admits it’s a big learning curve. He said he hasn’t had a lot of chances to meet with seniors but he is looking forward to it. His volunteering positions will allow him many chances to meet with seniors.

“A lot of my volunteer time is done with seniors. I think that’s one of the reasons I was accepted for the position,” he said. “I volunteer with Red Cross. A huge percentage of our clients are seniors. So I’m aware of what seniors need when they need hip replacements and knee replacements and all kinds of things.”

For more information visit seniorsadvocatebc.ca, phone 1-877-952-3181 or email info@seniorsadvocatebc.ca.

 

Just Posted

IN PHOTOS: The Rock Creek Fall Fair

Rides, races, music and bubbles – the Rock Creek Fall Fair had something for all attendees

Boundary businesses on wells face hefty upgrade costs

‘It’s easier to sell guns in Canada than it is to sell a hotdog’

Marathon variety show for peace starts Friday in Grand Forks

Peace In! Peace Out! brings together entertainers from B.C. and beyond for a 24-hour fundraiser

Author to bring stories of residential school survivors to Grand Forks

Story of Andy and Phyllis Chelsea ‘a celebration of strength and a condemnation of systemic racism’

Proposals due for youth-led Boundary projects

$15,000 available for youth-led community betterment projects in the Boundary

VIDEO: Drone footage documents work to free salmon at Big Bar landslide

Video shows crews working to remove rocks and wood, and transporting salmon by helicopter

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

B.C. party bus company to be monitored after 40 intoxicated teens found onboard

Police received tip teens and young adults were drinking on party buses and limousines in Surrey

Rick Mercer calls out Conservative candidate in B.C. for fake meme

‘Not true. All fake. Please Stop,’ tweeted Rick Mercer in response

Bear killed in Kimberley after chasing girl, wreaking havoc on town

This particular brown-coloured bear has been the subject of many calls this summer; very food habituated, CO says

Police investigate after intoxicated teens clash with security at B.C. fair

18-year-old woman arrested and RCMP looking at possible assault in Victoria-area fall fair incident

Most Read