Guelph Wellington Seniors Association – Candidate Questionnaire – Leanne Piper

October 4, 2010

1. What issues do seniors in your Ward have?

Seniors in Ward 5 face the same issues that many wards have. Seniors contribute substantially to our community – as volunteers, neighbours, mentors, and as customers of our many facilities, such as recreation centres, libraries, museums, parks, trails, etc., as well as our economic prosperity.

Accessibility
Our facilities, roadways, parks, trails, sidewalks and city buildings must be accessible to all.

Transit
Dependable, friendly, economical and flexible public transit means that seniors have the ability to travel around the city safely and efficiently. Whether it be by conventional bus or mobility transit, seniors are more likely to remain active and healthy when access to transportation is not a barrier.

Quality of Life
The demographic shift to a greater proportion of “boomers” has resulted in the need for increased active lifestyle opportunities for seniors – recreational facilities, programming, cultural venues and outdoor spaces. We need more opportunities for seniors in Ward 5 -– programs, services and supports – an “Evergreen” South would be ideal.

Aging in Place
Healthy neighbourhoods include seniors who are able to stay in their homes as long as possible. We need to insure that, as we grow and increase density of housing, that we maintain mixed use neighbourhoods where seniors can stay in their current home, downsize, or use their home as rental income, so that they can continue to enjoy their established neighbourhood.

At the same time, we need to plan for additional seniors housing, affordable housing, and lifestyle retirement living.

Ward 5 is very fortunate to be home to the “Village by the Arboretum” where a large population of seniors can enjoy a community focused on their needs. Small pockets of this type of housing form in other areas of Ward 5 can extend the benefit of senior-focused development.

Affordablity
Taxes are an ever-increasing burden for seniors, especially those without employment pensions. It is incumbent on city council to ensure that taxes are spent wisely and benefit the greatest number of citizens. We also must promote and maintain tax payment alternatives (such as payment deferment option currently available) for seniors who are financially burdened. Council must also encourage the development of more affordable housing options for seniors (such as the St. Joseph’s development).

2. Do you subscribe to the “Essential Features” of an “Age Friendly City” as set out by the WHO?

Yes, wholeheartedly. An “Age Friendly City” is of benefit to all citizens. After all, not one of us is getting any younger! Investments made today to make our city more age-friendly will serve to benefit future generations.

Leanne Piper
Ward 5 Candidate

Phone: 519-824-9000
Email: campaign@leannepiper.ca
Website: leannepiper.ca
Facebook: Re-Elect Leanne Piper Ward 5 Guelph