VANCOUVER, Feb. 10, 2012 /CNW/ - Delegates to the B.C. Council of Seniors Annual General Meeting today elected Arthur Kube to a two-year term as President of the 80,000 member organization. Kube, a long-time seniors advocate, says there are many issues where the voice of today's seniors should be heard.
"There is a pervasive sentiment in some governments, which is also reflected in the media, that seniors are a burden on society. In fact, today's seniors are living longer, healthier lives. As society's most experienced citizens, they are an asset and have much to contribute," said Kube.
"The increased longevity of citizens certainly creates challenges - but it also creates immense opportunities. In my view, government leaders and program designers have fallen far short in recognizing the positive contributions seniors can make to society as a whole," he said.
Kube added that much more could be done to address the social determinants of health - especially income, housing and social connectedness - to improve the lives of seniors and maximize their contribution to their communities. "Unfortunately, some governments seem to be going backwards in these areas," he said. "They must learn to work and plan with seniors, not for seniors."
The B.C. Council of Seniors - the Council of Senior Citizens Organizations of B.C. (COSCO) - is currently organizing a major conference to address the challenges and opportunities resulting from increased longevity. It will be held Oct. 1 and 2 in Richmond.
COSCO is an umbrella organization that brings together 80 different B.C. seniors groups to work on common issues. COSCO is also an affiliate of the one million member National Pensioners and Senior Citizen Federation, which promotes these issues at the national level. A major focus of COSCO's work is promoting good health. To this end, COSCO volunteers province-wide offer a series of free workshops on 35 different topics ranging from falls prevention to health literacy. More than 6,000 seniors have attended these workshops.
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