Few advocates understand the “intersection of challenges” when it comes to CALD seniors and housing needs, Dr Campbell told the Council on the Ageing Australia’s National Policy Forum in Canberra last week.
She urged those designing and delivering services to try and better understand the diversity of Australia’s migrant community and ensure their needs are included.
“It is important that the CALD voice is heard in every aspect of policy around older Australians in this country,” said Dr Campbell.
Older Australians from migrant and CALD backgrounds have a number of vulnerabilities including language, which often presents barriers to accessing information and services.
They are more likely to have an increased risk of poverty, lower savings, lower superannuation, lower rates of access to services and lower rates of information technology use, she said.
“Amongst many older CALD people, there is expectation that their families will take care of them in their older age, which does not always eventuate,” Dr Campbell said.
Conversely, many older migrants do not have experience caring for their own parents in older age, which is important as that experience would often help them appreciate what their own potential future needs, she said.
“Many may not have had any interaction with government services in general before they find themselves needing housing,” Dr Campbell said.
Other challenges facing CALD seniors include discriminatory practices among landlords, she said.
SOURCE: Egan, Natasha. “Seniors from Diverse Backgrounds need Housing Advocates Australian.” Agenda, June 28, 2017
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