Edmonton committed to becoming “age friendly”

This is some good local news!

Edmonton has become the first municipality in Canada to institute a seniors declaration, committing the city to strive toward a more “age-friendly” environment.

“We hope this will be the first of its kind and it will spur other municipalities, governments and private-sector organizations to adopt similar declarations,” Coun. Linda Sloan said following a ceremony Thursday that officially proclaimed the declaration.

“When people grow old, I think there is a prevalence in society to isolate seniors, to feel they have contributed and now it’s past their time. This declaration is about defining their lifelong value and contribution.”

The declaration states that individuals of all age are to be respected, kept safe and made a priority in plans for new infrastructure and programs.

Sloan said this commitment could take many forms, from how the city builds roads and neighbourhoods to installing more benches to encouraging people to give up their seat on a bus.

“To me, one of the big things is increasing the opportunities for young people and old people to get together and learn from each other,” said Alice Major, the city former poet laureate. “That might take the form of certain kinds of facilities we build or ways we use existing facilities, or it might mean taking seniors into schools. It doesn’t need to be a big expenditure of cash. It just has to be a mind shift.”

From the Edmonton Journal.

These are great first steps to combating ageism; let’s see if they play out.

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