- Updated 'Age Friendly Communities Toolkit' assists local governments in engaging with older residents
- Developers and community leaders encouraged to better accommodate an ageing population
- Age-friendly approach ensures active engagement at the local level with older people
Seniors and Ageing Minister Don Punch today launched an updated version of the 'Age Friendly Communities Toolkit', which guides local governments to engage with older residents and to assist in planning communities that better accommodate an ageing population.
Updated for the first time since 2006 and now titled 'Creating Age-Friendly Communities in Western Australia', the toolkit provides expanded advice to local governments on how to consult with their local seniors to understand what they require to be able to age well in their community.
It describes the social trends that see an age-friendly approach to planning serve as a way to combat growing issues in an older population including elder abuse, ageism and social isolation.
The Toolkit continues to use the World Health Organisation's eight 'domains' for global age-friendly cities: outdoor spaces and buildings, transportation, housing, social participation, respect and social inclusion, civic participation and employment, communication and information, and community support and health services.
WA has been an affiliate to the World Health Organisation's Global Network for Age-friendly Cities and Communities since 2017, and is the only Australian State or Territory to have achieved this status.
Local governments and individuals around WA provided input to the development of the updated toolkit.
An age-friendly approach ensures active engagement at the local level with older people, their families and carers, and the service providers who interact with them.
As at June 30, 2019, 388,708 Western Australians were aged 65 years and over. This age group currently represents 14.8 per cent of the total WA population.
It is projected that by 2031, the proportion of people aged 65 years and over will represent 18 per cent of the population. People aged 85 years and over are forecast to nearly double during this time.
Comments attributed to Seniors and Ageing Minister Don Punch
"The McGowan Government is committed to supporting people to live their best lives as they age and ensuring WA seniors are able to do the things that are of value to them.
"Western Australians are living longer and with our population ageing, there is a greater need than ever to ensure people's environments are is age-friendly so they can access the activities and services they require to be able to live fulfilling lives.
"An age-friendly approach supports this, and the Age-Friendly Toolkit is effectively a 'how to' manual for local governments, developers and community leaders."
Minister's office - 6552 6900