Social isolation has been recognized as an emerging problem for senior citizens throughout the country. In 2013, the National Seniors Council targeted the reduction of social isolation among seniors as a top priority.
The problem is made especially acute for in English-speakers in Quebec for two reasons:
- It has been demonstrated that seniors have a lower rate of bilingualism than younger Anglophones (www.official languages.gc.ca) (47% rate of bilingualism amongst Anglophones 65 years and older).
- Because of the trend of out-migration of Anglophones, many seniors find themselves alone and/or isolated from family members who are attempting to manage care and services from out of the province.
According to a recent report, there is amongst Anglophone Quebec, a “missing middle”that is, “proportionally fewer middle-aged English-speakers than French-speakers,” which has obvious implications for senior family members living in Quebec. The Council, along with other organizations working in the community, is aware that work must be done to identify measures specific to the distinctive situation of the English-speaking senior population in Quebec. The Council will host the first of three workshops designed to bring together those organizations and individuals working with seniors to address this emerging issue.
Please contact the Council for more information.