On 1 May the Andrews Government brought down their 2018–19 Budget. COTA Victoria was pleased to see the investment in the health system to enable it to better meet the needs of an ageing population. However, ageing is about much more than health and we were disappointed that there was not more focus on other areas such as employment, community transport and areas of prevention to assist people to remain healthy as they age (see: media release). The pilot programs for addressing elder abuse through the health system were extended, but Seniors Rights Victoria did not receive additional resources to cope with the unprecedented demand from older Victorians experiencing elder abuse. We will continue to work with all political parties through our Alliance for an Agenda for Ageing and through COTA’s election platform to ensure the needs and aspirations of older Victorians are included in their platforms for the election.
COTA welcomes the commitment to better planning for an ageing population and aged care with the announcements in the Federal budget. The More choices for a longer life package not only covers aged care initiatives but support for mature workers, retirement income initiatives and further investment in preventing elder abuse. For more detail see COTA Australia media release.
We were excited to have our first presentation of Unspoken: What will become of me? at Kyneton on 3 May. COTA Victoria and the Health Issues Centre will be touring Victoria with this interesting mix of art, drama and discussion to tackle difficult issues around the end of life. We look at how you can plan to have your wishes respected at this time. For details of the tour see the schedule here.
COTA Victoria are working on our Strategic Plan for 2018–21 and welcome your comments on where you think we should focus our efforts. You can send us an email via our website. One area of focus will be to increase our direct contact with Victorians 50+ through this newsletter. If you have a friend who you think would like to hear about COTA Victoria’s activities throughout this election year, and have the opportunity to contribute their views, please forward this newsletter and encourage them to subscribe.