Seniors care needs to get the level of attention that homelessness receives, says letter writer.                                Wikicommons

Seniors care needs to get the level of attention that homelessness receives, says letter writer. Wikicommons

Seniors issues taking a backseat to homelessness

Those who cannot afford private retirement facilities get inadequate care

Editor, The News:

I feel that there is a terrible inequity between how we spend money on our seniors as opposed to the amounts of money we spend trying to “save” our homeless population.

Here in Maple Ridge, we spend a lot of time and money catering to our homeless population. We have allowed them to camp out in nice neighbourhoods, brought them toilet facilities, fed them good food, housed them indoors, and tried to buy a motel for them to live in.

Apparently we are looking for land in order to provide them with good housing and care.

None of this has worked, and now we have another dirty, filthy homeless camp on the Haney Bypass.

On the other hand of my equation, we must look at how we treat our elders who may be housed in a “seniors facility.”

Our seniors pay for their housing, but if they are not fortunate enough to be able to afford $4,000 to $5,000 per month, they are forced into government sponsored facilities where they live often with more than one person in a room.

The food provided is without doubt poor quality, and at best not good.

The care provided is the best the understaffed personnel can do with what they have, but again is not good.

They are often not allowed to have a refrigerator, so they cannot at least get their own food or any type of food that requires refrigeration.

I could go on and on about the inadequacies, but I hope you get the gist of what I am saying.

Many of these elderly individuals have had good, decent, moral lives, worked hard, raised families, but are forced into this type of situation due to a lack of financial ability to pay for a private care facility.

To all the individuals who implore us to give more and more and more to the homeless people, I ask you to visit one of the seniors facilities that we have, and just see how our elderly citizens are living out the final phase of their lives, and see if you would like to be there.

Our government, including our own mayor, should perhaps revisit who and where they are spending our hard-earned tax dollars.

Larry Graves

Maple Ridge