Former President of the Dominica Council On Aging, Zetma Toussaint, is of the opinion that the elderly are not being fully embraced by the people of Dominica, saying that parts of Society still produce negative images of the older folks.
She made that statement at the Annual General Meeting of the DCOA on Wednesday 31st May 2017.
Toussaint said that little attention is being paid towards the “the potential among our senior citizens.”
“Can we in Dominica say that we have fully embraced the elderly in our society? If we seriously reflect on this question, we will answer in the negative. I say so because sections of society still perpetuate negative images of our elderly. We still have not fully capitalized on the rich resource in our society as we pay little attention to the potential among our senior citizens,” she said.
As stated by Toussaint, embracing the elderly would mean freeing them of any form of discrimination and abuse that are prevalent.
“If we truly embrace our elderly, we would ensure that they live their lives free of discrimination and abuse of any kind, especially nowadays, financial abuse,” Toussaint stated.
Toussaint cites the provision of a number of amenities as a necessary step towards improving the standard of living of the elderly.
“The senior citizens should be provided with the wherewithal to improve their standard of living, that is, proper housing including; provision of utilities, proper nutrition, accessible, available and affordable health care appropriate to their age, and opportunities for recreation and relaxation among other amenities,” she remarked.
She also added that all these provisions are in keeping with Article 25 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
According to her, the government of Dominica has been of “great assistance”, and also, the corporate citizens have played their role in helping the elderly.
The Dominica Council On Ageing is a voluntary, Non- Governmental Organization (NGO) which serves as a coordinating body for national groups concerned with the welfare of the elderly.