The AQDR’s year 2011 in review

March 29, 2012 by Martine Rodrigue

As you know, the AQDR’s official mission is to collectively defend the rights of retired and pre-retired individuals, primarily through sociopolitical practices. In light of its views on aging, the AQDR’s positions touch on every issue of concern to those 55 and over, including pension plans, income, housing, safety, violence, ageism, social exclusion, health, at-home support and care, drugs and transportation—in short, just about anything that affects the daily lives of seniors.

Many of the AQDR’s recommendations brought to the attention of various government authorities have been adopted, particularly in regard to the certification of seniors’ residences. For instance, residences whose services are designed for independent seniors will henceforth be distinguished from those whose services are better suited to semi-autonomous individuals. Regulations will consequently be adapted to each type of residence.

L’implication 2011 de l’AQDRBy law, the government will also be able to require training for personnel working in seniors’ residences; require staff and volunteers to pass criminal background checks; determine how residents’ level of autonomy is to be assessed; and compel residences to set up committees on living conditions.

Moreover, with the inclusion of negligence in the Coroners Act as a cause of death requiring notification of the coroner, the deaths of elderly residents will no longer be systematically treated as commonplace, a form of discrimination reported all too often.

In regard to the Civil Code, the financial burden of the elderly will be eased by two measures, namely the reduction in the advance notification period from three to two months if a tenant moves because of a need for more extensive services, and the exclusion of fees for services provided by the landlord to the senior in question.

Certain innovative projects have been carried out (or are in the works) across Québec. Here are a few examples:

  • In Lanaudière, a project aimed at getting people out of isolation and helping them rediscover the pleasure of going grocery-shopping and preparing one’s own meals was launched and subsequently extended to seven rural municipalities.
  • In Sherbrooke, various tools and mechanisms were developed and implemented to enable the city’s Caisses Desjardins to work with the local CSSS to prevent financial abuse of the elderly.
  • In Chaudière-Appalaches, an information program for seniors on choosing a suitable living environment has been piloted in Lévis and will be rolled out across the region over the coming years.
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