Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

October 20, 2012 13:30 ET

Minister of State (Seniors) participates in Canadian Association on Gerontology Conference in Vancouver

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 20, 2012) - The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors), addressed participants today at the Canadian Association on Gerontology's 41st Annual Scientific and Educational Meeting, the theme of which is "Aging in a Changing World."

Minister of State Wong introduced one of the keynote speakers, Dr. Geoff Fernie, Director for Research at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, who spoke about the role of technology in helping seniors with disabilities stay mobile and independent. She also provided opening remarks at the National Seniors Council's workshop, where Council members presented preliminary findings on their consultations with employers about the aging workforce.

"The Government of Canada is committed to supporting the well-being and ongoing needs of Canada's seniors," said Minister of State Wong. "Working together, we can all encourage seniors to stay active, engaged and informed in a rapidly changing world."

Minister of State Wong also participated in the annual Awards Ceremony of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Institute of Aging. The awards are an occasion for members of the research community to recognize the work of their peers.

This three-day conference provides an opportunity for all levels of governments, seniors' organizations, professional associations, academics, experts and non-governmental organizations to come together to share their views and perspectives to better address the needs of seniors.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

BACKGROUNDER

The Government of Canada is working hard to help improve the lives of seniors on many fronts. These efforts include:

  • introducing a new Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) top-up benefit to help Canada's most vulnerable seniors in 2011. This was the largest increase in 25 years to the GIS for the lowest-income seniors. This measure further improves the financial security and well-being of more than 680 000 seniors across Canada;
  • increasing funding to the New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP) in Budget 2011 by $5 million, bringing the Program's annual budget to $45 million. The Program helps seniors use their leadership abilities, energy and skills to benefit communities across Canada;
  • providing Canadians with close to $76 billion this year through Canada's public pension system;
  • providing $2.5 billion in additional tax relief to seniors and pensioners through measures such as pension income splitting and increasing the Age credit in 2012-2013;
  • providing $400 million over two years under Canada's Economic Action Plan for the construction of housing units for low-income seniors;
  • supporting positive and active aging through the collaborative Age-Friendly Communities Initiative, Physical Activity Tips for Older Adults and falls-prevention initiatives;
  • appointing a Minister of State (Seniors)-someone who can bring the concerns of older Canadians to the Cabinet table and stand up on their behalf;
  • ongoing actions to address elder abuse, which include: awareness campaigns; the NHSP, which funds projects to raise awareness of elder abuse; and recently proposed legislation that would help ensure consistently tough penalties for offences involving the abuse of elderly persons; and
  • developing seniors.gc.ca as a central resource for Government of Canada information relating to seniors and seniors' initiatives.

Contact Information

  • Robert Lynch
    Director, Communications
    Office of Minister of State Wong
    613-790-0219

    Media Relations Office
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    819-994-5559