The Victorian coalition government has announced the establishment of a part-time commissioner for seniors who will chair a advisory committee for seniors in the southern state.
The appointment is the result of a Victorian parliamentary Inquiry into Opportunities for Participation of Victorian Seniors, which recommended establishing the role.
Victoria’s Minister for Ageing, David Davis, tabled the Victorian government’s response to that inquiry’s report in parliament yesterday.
The appointment of a Commissioner for Senior Victorians will ensure better understanding of the needs of older people and better co-ordination of effort across government, Mr Davis said.
“The aim of this inquiry was to respond to the needs of our ageing population and create age-friendly communities that support older Victorians to participate fully in society,” he said.
“The new Ministerial Advisory Committee will develop a whole-of-government older person’s action plan, detailing strategies and actions underway across departments to address participation of older people and co-ordinate the plan across government.”
The commissioner will report to the Minister for Ageing and his or her achievement will be included in the Department of Health’s annual report to the Victorian Parliament.
The new commissioner and advisory committee is in addition to a range of other initiatives underway designed to boost community participation and the health and wellbeing of older people, Mr Davis said.
“The Improving Liveability for Older People Initiative is helping services plan activities that increase social participation in small towns with a significant ageing population,” Mr Davis said.
“We are helping isolated culturally diverse seniors get involved in their local communities through the Participation for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Seniors Grants Program.
“We have also established the Seniors Online website and are tackling elder abuse through the Elder Abuse Prevention and Response Guidelines for Action 2012-14.
“There is also continuing funding for the popular Seniors Card program, the Victorian Seniors Festival and the Home and Community Care program supporting seniors to live independently at home.
“We see the establishment of a Commissioner for Senior Victorians as another positive step in making a difference to the quality of life for older people in Victoria.”