Services for Elders

BME onsultaion day
BME onsultaion day

Valuing the needs of older people: ‘When will our voice be heard?’

Story: Abtisam Mohamed & Gulnaz Hussain

On 24th April 2007 over 100 older people came to voice their concerns at a BME consultation day jointly organised by the Pakistan Advice Centre, Yemeni Community Association and Somali Disability Group.

Countless frustrations were voiced. One frustrated older person stated:

“We’ve lost faith in Council services and want services from our own community voluntary groups.”

Others claimed they “do not know what’s on offer.” One elder argued, “The service provision needs to take into account cultural preferences.”

A Yemeni woman said, “Several days a week a minibus picks up my neighbour to take her to a day-care centre. Why does no-one do this for me? Is it because I can’t speak English?”

Undervalued and ignored

Many were disconcerted that despite contributing to support the economy for many years, often working in dismal and underpaid conditions, they were now undervalued and ignored.

It is clear that older people feel their needs have been ignored and that they have little optimism things will change. A Pakistani man said:

“It seems that the Council and the rest of the world do not care for the elderly. What little help provided by the Council is often inappropriate and too late.”

Council officers listened to what the older people had to say. A report based on the findings is to be published and given to the people with the power to make a difference.

Will the findings change the way services are commissioned or delivered? We’ll have to wait and see!

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The content on this page was added to the website by Kate Atkinson on 2007-05-30 21:31:57.
The content of the page was last modified by Jamie Marriott on 2007-06-04 16:53:04.

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