Archive for June, 2013

Notes from “I am an Ontarian, and I am here to Stay”

Posted on: June 24th, 2013 by Chloe Hamilton

In honour of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day…

“I am an Ontarian and I am Here to Stay”
Integrating Services for All Seniors in Our Community

Chloe Hamilton from Warm Embrace Elder Care has written some blog posts relating to World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. please Click Here to read them.

 Presented by:

Kitchener-Waterloo Multicultural Centre
Project Wisdom, Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington
YMCA Immigrant Services
Waterloo Region Committee on Elder Abuse
Waterloo Elder Abuse Response Team
Wellington Seniors at Risk Program, CMHA
This event, “I am an Ontarian and I am Here to Stay”, provided insight into how we, as a community, are working together to integrate services for all seniors in our community. The Harmony Interactive Troupe depicted the story of a senior immigrant’s experience in connecting with services.  Our keynote speaker, Jassy Narayan, challenged us to “build bridges” with one another; this was further reinforced through table discussions in which we discussed how we, as social service providers, settlement service providers, and community members, can work together to provide integrated and collaborative service.
The following themes were generated during discussion of Irina’s story:

1. Health
2. Legal
3. Income
4. Communication
5. Social/Emotional Wellbeing
6. Housing
7. Immigration

Within each theme, groups were asked to identify resources and challenges from the perspective of an immigrant in Waterloo Wellington region.  This document is a collection of those comments.  An overall challenge (regardless of theme identified) for older adults experiencing elder abuse is overcoming feelings of shame, guilt and fear.  This can be compounded for immigrants by language and culture.

1. Health Resources:

• Intensive Geriatric Service Worker (IGSW)
• Geriatric Emergency Management Nurse (GEM) – available in each emergency room in Waterloo Wellington  and specialize in assessments for the older adult
• Family Physician or Family Health Team
• Community Health Centre
• Waterloo Wellington Community Care Access Centre (WWCCAC)
• Dental Program in Wellington
• Vision Care
• Public Health
• Seniors Centres
• Immigrant Services
• Literacy Centres


• Eligibility for OHIP – there is a waiting period for OHIP coverage; OHIP coverage may not be fully inclusive.  Discussion about the length of time being dependent on immigration status (in some cases).
• Prescriptions may cost money and not have OHIP coverage
• Finding a family physician can be difficult if not assisted by persons who know the system
• Cost of dental or vision care may be beyond financial resources
• Physicians may lack knowledge of the unique needs of the immigrant older adult (i.e., PTSD; enteric infections specific to the region etc.)
• Literacy may be an issue for the older adult and language may also be a challenge.  Family members may be used as interpreters and physicians are not able to identify warning signs or concerns of abuse

2. Legal Resources:

• Police
• Legal Aid
• Women in Crisis Services (Waterloo and Wellington)
• Family Court Support Programs
• Victim Services
• Community Justice Initiatives or other mediation services
• Places of Worship – may have person to assist in finding resources
• The Law Society of Upper Canada  – 30min consultation by telephone for free legal advice ( or Toll Free  1-800-668-7380   TTY: 416-644-4886)
• Advocacy Centre for the Elderly  (416-598-2656)


• Fear of police and/or misunderstanding of their role in the community
• Legal Aid has specific requirements, which are both financial and issue specific.  Depending on the issue, a legal aid certificate may not be granted.
• Waitlist for Legal Aid
• Availability of Police/Lawyers who speak language of the older adult
• Older adult may not have criminal recourse if they have provided consent to financial transactions (i.e., verbal agreement to put $100,000 towards the purchase of a home for all family members to live together).  Civil law may be available; however, it will require financial, emotional and social resources to pursue.
• Cost of retaining a lawyer
• Education available for new Canadians regarding their rights as well as the law governing persons in this country.
• Education available specifically for older adults (i.e., Power of Attorney)

3. Income Resources:

• Kitchener-Waterloo Multicultural Centre and Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington
• Ontario Works
• Pension from Country of Origin


• Challenging system to understand; in addition, written information is most often provided in English (i.e., deposit statements, applications, etc.)
• Ontario Works eligibility is specific and also cross-referenced to Sponsorship agreements (i.e., sponsor is responsible for paying monthly if sponsorship breakdown occurs)
• There are very specific rules regarding money that can be held in trust and under what circumstances (i.e., inheritance etc.); this presents challenges for the older adult to receive compensation for financial abuse/theft without impacting OW

4. Communication Resources:

• Kitchener-Waterloo Multicultural Centre (free interpretation services for victims of family violence)
• Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington
• Immigrant Services of Cambridge
• Family Counseling Centres
• Places of Worship
• Within a profession (i.e., family physician; police; nursing; SW)
• Seniors Safety Line (1-866-299-1011 (24 hours a day;  7 days a week;  150 languages))


• Availability of language resources
• Family members are often used as interpreters and therefore difficult for service provider or community member to be aware of any potential elder abuse issues
• Belief that service providers/companies cannot afford interpreter/translator
• Settlement workers sometimes not included in ‘circle of care’ (referring to community, health supports)
• Social Services and other community supports are behind in hiring multi-lingual workers
• Connecting to isolated seniors (language; geography etc)

5. Social/Emotional Resources:

• Immigrant Services
• Multicultural Centres
• KWI – Immigrant Support
• Mosaic Counselling and Family Services
• Places of Worship
• Community Health Centres or Family Physicians


• Awareness of the resource for both the immigrant and other community services
• Fear/shame (may include issues beyond Canada to country of origin)
• Understanding of the complex issues for the immigrant older adult which needs to include the larger social/cultural context that will impact identification of issues, seeking assistance and overall  impact the decisions of the older adult

6. Housing Resources:

• Shelters (including, women’s crisis shelters)
• Emergency housing available for victims of elder abuse
• Priority Housing Lists
• Mary’s Place; Charles St; Bridges (Cambridge)
• Immigrant Services/Multicultural Centres
• Places of Worship


• Short term solution for shelters and emergency housing
• Eligibility criteria (i.e., income)
• Wait list for subsidized housing
• Language availability of support persons to assist with housing applications
• Lack of affordable or emergency housing
• Location of affordable housing may not be conducive for an older adult
• Gender specific programs (i.e., women’s shelters)
• Application required

7. Immigration Resources:

• Kitchener-Waterloo Multicultural Centre
• Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington
• Immigration Lawyers
• Embassies


• Person’s status (visitor, landed immigrant, visa etc.)
• For support person working outside of immigrant services (i.e., health, community), understanding person’s status is a challenge in relation to eligibility for programs, etc.
• Length of time regarding sponsorship and financial support (currently 10 years and will increase to 20 years).  This challenges the sponsor and family relationships for a significant time and also increases the likelihood that the older adult will develop disease processes that may create further strain (i.e., dementia).  Accessing additional support (i.e., care settings) may place the sponsorship agreement at risk and create significant burden for the sponsoring family.  However, if additional support is not in place, the older adult’s needs may not be met (i.e., older adult with dementia being left alone for long periods while family at work)
• Importance of family relationship will impact decisions about accessing financial and social supports
• Immigration lawyers may be cost prohibitive for some older adults
• Travelling to Embassies located in other cities and navigating their system of support





PWS e-learning DVD now Available from NICE

Posted on: June 22nd, 2013 by Chloe Hamilton

PSW e-learning DVD now available from NICE

NOW AVAILABLE ON DVD FROM the National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly

E-LEARNING PROGRAM FOR NURSING ASSISTANTS to help improve the quality of care provided to residents in long term care facilities.

The purpose of this program is to identify Nursing Assistants’ role function challenges and strategies for managing work-related relationship conflicts with residents, families and co-workers, AND to identify organizational strategies for supporting Nursing Assistant role functions.

The Nursing Assistant E-Learning Program DVD includes five modules:

. Introduction
. Working with Residents
. Working with Families
. Working with Co-Workers
. Self-Care

The Nursing Supervisor/Manager DVD includes a module with a focus on the role of Healthcare Teams for insuring optimal care of residents.
To order this innovative 2-DVD set visit the NICE Resource Request page at








Project Coordinator Job Posting

Posted on: June 17th, 2013 by Chloe Hamilton

The Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse  is currently seeking a Project Coordinator for its  Discovery Project.

All applicants should apply by sending a resume and cover letter saved in one document to our new Human Resources email at by June 28, 2013.

Please Click Here for more information