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Vancouver non-profit housing provider says affordability hurting vulnerable low-income seniors

Last Updated Jun 13, 2019 at 7:39 pm PDT

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Summary

35 per cent of seniors in BC are renters who have household incomes lower than 20-thousand dollars a year

Research suggests low-income seniors are also more likely to fall victim to abuse or neglect themselves

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Vancouver’s housing crisis continues to hurt low-income seniors.

That’s what a local non-profit provider of homes for the elderly is saying on the eve of World Elder Abuse Day (Saturday, June 15th).

Carolina Ibarra says 35 per cent of seniors in BC are renters who have household incomes lower than 20-thousand dollars a year.

“They have limited income which makes it difficult to afford housing, food, medication and on top of that 92 per cent of this particular demographic lives alone.”

Ibarra, who’s the Director of Strategic Initiatives at Brightside Community Homes Foundation, says nine out of ten elderly renters in BC live alone, so it’s important for loved ones to stay in contact.

“Help them to participate in their community, to know their resources, who they can call for help. A number of people around a senior or any person are a very strong way to prevent abuse.”

Ibarra tells NEWS 1130 low-income seniors are also more likely fall victim to abuse or neglect themselves.

“They’re vulnerable to others who may control their finances, their living conditions. When people become isolated and depressed, they can neglect basic care for themselves and that is a significant threat to their own health and safety.”

Brightside is co-hosting a free barbecue Friday at the Britannia Community Services Centre with the Grandview Woodlands Food Connection to boost awareness about elder abuse.

The event runs from 10:30 am to 2:30 pm.