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COTA life

Advancing the rights, needs and interests of Queenslanders as they age

Edition 24

Mark Tucker-Evans - Talking Ageing 


COTA Queensland hosted IFA’s 13th Global Conference on Ageing in Brisbane 21-23 June 2016. The conference was co-sponsored by the World Health Organisation and brought together leaders from 32 countries to share knowledge and develop the discourse on ageing issues.


Members of the Global Network of Age-Friendly Cities and Communities, established by the World Health Organization, gathered to discuss using and adapting WHO’s monitoring framework and core indicator guide for age friendly cities and communities.


"The Network connects cities from around the world that are committed to becoming better places in which to grow older,” said Dr John Beard, Director of the Department of Ageing and Life Course at WHO.  “This requires environments that both help people retain their physical and mental health and enable people who have experienced losses of capacity to adapt to and compensate for these.” 


“Being a member of the WHO Global Network of Age-Friendly Cities and Communities demonstrates a real commitment to being age-friendly.  It provides a strategic framework to help guide policy, and network to support its implementation,” explained Heidi MacDonald, Project Implementation Officer from the Whyalla & Eyre Peninsular, South Australia – the most recent Australian city to join the initiative.


“This is a wonderful initiative and we’re proud to be on board,” she added.


Although Queensland has no registered cities yet, the Queensland Seniors Minister Coralee O'Rourke used the conference to announce the Queensland Government’s  first steps in building more age-friendly communities by releasing the state's first age-friendly communities action plan including 79 actions to be delivered over four years at a cost of $8.3 million.
"This plan has set the platform for a whole government vision to create a community in which older people are valued, respected and have every opportunity to be involved," Ms O'Rourke said. "By adopting this attitude we are ensuring our communities are a better place to live - for everyone."

“We’re thrilled at the enthusiasm we’re seeing from Australian cities and communities,” said Dr John Beard. “Many of the challenges associated with population ageing can be addressed by changes in behaviour and policy. These cities are setting a lead for others to follow.”


“Age-friendly environments hold the key to enabling older people to do what they value.  Our global conference is an important platform to learn and exchange good practices that build on the voices of older people,” said Secretary General from the International Federation on Ageing, Dr Jane Barratt.


The Queensland Seniors Newspaper has chronicled many of the conference outcomes found under the World Ageing Conference hub page, from keynote profiles to video interviews of many of the speakers and delegates to updates from each of the conference days.


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Taking Action

COTA Queensland has been a strong Age-friendly advocate since the WHO launched its  Age-friendly Cities and Communities initiative in 2007.


The Queensland: an age-friendly community – Action Plan  states that the Queensland Government will work with Council on the Ageing (COTA) Queensland to advocate for and support the development of an age-friendly Queensland through:

• Building a contemporary research and evidence base, including indicators, performance measures and evaluation frameworks about age-friendly work programs and initiatives to better understand and influence policy and planning that supports older people; and
• Developing resources and tools about what an age-friendly community looks like to support local government, not-for-profit and for-profit sectors to be age-friendly.


To progress towards a more age-friendly Queensland, we need to understand who older Queenslanders are and the demographic changes that are occurring. A consideration of the changing population composition is important not only in planning and funding services and infrastructure to meet community need, but also the new opportunities and changing expectations of what ageing means in the community.


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NAIDOC celebrations are held around Australia each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and are an opportunity to recognise the contributions that Indigenous Australians make to our country and our society.

NAIDOC is celebrated not only in Indigenous communities.  Australians from all different walks of life join in the celebrations of NAIDOC Week, with an increase in government agencies, schools, local councils and workplaces participating in events throughout Australia.  Local community celebrations are encouraged and often organised by schools, community groups, councils, and workplaces.

NAIDOC originally stood for ‘National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee’. This committee was once responsible for organising national activities during NAIDOC Week and its acronym has since become the name of the week itself. Find out more about the origins and history of NAIDOC Week.

Click here to download a timeline.

The week is celebrated not just in our Indigenous communities but also in increasing numbers of government agencies, community organisations, local councils, workplaces, schools and sporting groups.

For ideas on how to celebrate NAIDOC Week click here.

To find events in your community click here.


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Join us this week for a very special episode of Radio COTA.  This week in celebration of the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples we have dedicated our show to NADIOC Week.   Featured in the show is an interview with Mick Gooda, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner with the Australian Human Rights Commission and Donna Thomas shares her story about discovering her Indigenous roots.

Listen today.

Queensland Seniors Week 2016 - It's on for young & old

Queenslanders of all ages will come together 13 to 21 August 2016 to celebrate the valuable contributions older people make to their communities.

Last year Seniors Week was a huge success with 737 events held throughout Queensland.  Queensland Seniors Week 2016 is shaping up to be another successful year with a fantastic range of events organised by community organisations across the state. We thank the Queensland Government for providing $100,000 to subsidise a number of these events. 


You're invited to support Queensland Seniors Week by:
• Hosting and registering an event
• Supporting local events in your community
Changing your email signature
Supporting the campaign through social media
• Participating in the Face of Ageing campaign,  challenging stereotypes of ageing


If you haven't already done so, we encourage you to visit to register or find events in your area.

There are a number of resources you can download and customise to promote your event to your community.

For more information about Seniors Week 2016 visit or phone 1300 738 348 toll free within Queensland.

We look forward to your support in making Seniors Week 2016 a huge success.


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COTA Community Ambassadors

COTA Queensland launched the COTA Community Ambassador program in June, a new pilot program that will inform the wider policy and advocacy work of COTA Queensland through the collection of data and case studies from older members of local communities about issues that are affecting them. COTA Community Ambassadors are volunteering their time and skill to be key focal points for our organisation in their communities to advocate for positive change and to contribute to their communities becoming more age-friendly.

The Community Ambassador program is being piloted in the areas of Gold Coast, Ipswich, Moreton Bay, Roma and the Sunshine Coast. It commenced with a three-day workshop to develop the role with the COTA Community Ambassadors themselves.

Welcome to David, Bob, Angela, Zelda, Gabby, Danijela, John and Bryan - our new COTA Community Ambassadors!


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Update your saved links!

From 1 July 2016 Ageing and Aged Care content will be moved from the Department of Social Services website to the Department of Health’s platform at This is due to Machinery of Government changes which moved the responsibility for Ageing and Aged Care from the Department of Social Services to the Department of Health. The switchover will not be instantaneous as it can take some time for pages to appear. You will be able to continue to access content from the DSS site until the migration is complete. There will be re-directs in place if you use an old DSS url.

Ageing and Aged care content will remain the same, with only minor changes to site navigation.

What you need to do after 1 July:

Read More 


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My Aged Care system release – summary of changes

My Aged Care system release will occurred with changes coming into effect on 27 June.

To assist service providers and assessors to understand the changes, a Summary of My Aged Care System Changes is now available.

The key changes to the system focus on:
• enhancements to the website, including:
o web referral form and process*
o ability to view and compare additional information in the Aged Care Home Finder
o changes to how Multi-Purpose Services are displayed in the finders
o changes to the display of Notices of Non-Compliance and Sanctions in the finders

• enhancements to the assessor and provider portals, including:

Read More 


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Consumer Directed Care and the Home Care Standards

Home Care Today and the Quality Agency have developed forums on Consumer Directed Care (CDC) and how it supports performance against the Home Care Standards in response to an overwhelming demand from industry seeking further information.

A national road show of one-day practical forums on ‘Consumer Directed Care and the Home Care Standards - Where can it take you?’ look at consumer directed care in the context of the Home Care Standards and help envisage systems and processes that facilitate innovative and quality focused consumer directed care. Participants will have the opportunity to explore good practice and provide a range of tools and resources to support services and consumers. The forum will help develop action plans for innovation and continuous improvement to foster consumer quality of life, wellness and reablement.

Read More 


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Getting Ready for February 2017: Rights, Risks and Roles

This one day workshop is designed for Managers and Case Managers/Advisors of organisations providing Home Care Packages.  It will provided participants with the latest information on how organisations are preparing for 2017, how consumers are experiencing  Consumer Directed Care and also cover the Aged Care Roadmap. 
The workshop is presented by Home Care Today and supported by Aged and Community Services Australia (Queensland).  

Date:   Wednesday 20 July 2015  in Brisbane


More Information 


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Caring for your disabled adult child - what can go wrong (Part 1)

Source: Brian Herd CRH Law

It is a life-long devotion to duty for a significant proportion of the over 2 million family carers in Australia, namely, parents (often elderly) caring for their disabled adult children.

Longevity, however, is not all that it's cracked up to be. As carer parents grow older and suffer the slings and arrows of ageing, there are 2 major events that can impact on care for their loved ones – the parent's death or disability. The effect of these events can vary depending on the complexity of the caring scenario. Recently, for example, we assisted a woman in her late 70's who was caring both for her 82 year old husband with dementia as well as their 61 year old son, who suffered from a congenital brain disorder.

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Queensland Community Care Services

If you need help to stay living at home and in your community, you may be eligible for assistance from Queensland Community Care. This provides basic support (usually one to five hours per week) to people with a disability or condition that restricts their day-to-day living.

Types of services available include In-Home Services, Community-based services, transport, Clinical services, Respite, counselling and carer support services.
In order to access Queensland Community Care services, you must be a person, or the carer of a person, who:

• is under 65, or under 50 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and
• has a moderate, severe or profound disability, or a condition which restricts the ability to carry out activities of daily living, and
• is living in the community, and
• is having difficulty performing the core activities of daily living* due to functional limitations, and
• is at risk of losing independence without assistance from Community Care


*Core activities of daily living are communication, self-care and mobility. Core activity tasks include dressing, bathing or showering, preparing meals, house cleaning and maintenance, and using public transport.

Read More 


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Political support is growing!

The Australian Network for Universal Housing Design (ANUHD) is seeking further support and advocacy regarding the Proposal for Change for accessibility in new housing in the National Construction Code.


The Queensland Minister for Housing and Public Works, the Hon Michael de Brenni, has directed the Queensland representative on the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) to offer ‘in-principle’ support to consider this Proposal for Change.

This has been supported by letters from the Queensland Premier, the Hon Annastacia Palaszczuk and Minister for Disability Services, Minister for Seniors, and Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland, the Hon Coralee O'Rourke.


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Advisory Taskforce on Residential Transition for Ageing Queenslanders

Queensland’s population is ageing and will provide enormous challenges and opportunities over the coming decades. In particular, in the area of housing, whether ‘ageing in place’ or transitioning to another form of accommodation, the ageing of the population will transform the way that older people are housed and change the way that related care and support is delivered.

Housing plays an important role in assuring quality of life and wellbeing, particularly for older Queenslanders. For many people, housing is at the centre of their sense of security and independence in retirement.

In response to these emerging issues for older people, the Queensland Government established an Advisory Taskforce on Residential Transition for Ageing Queenslanders.  The Taskforce has been asked to make recommendations and advise the government on initiatives and models that support residential transitions, which are affordable and enable older people to maintain their independence as they age.

The Taskforce wants to hear your ideas on the housing issues facing older Queenslanders today and what the might do to address them.


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Griffith University  NDIS Symposia Series                                        

Housing for people with disability: Let’s take action


Date: Monday, 8 August 2016, 8.30am - 4.30pm
Venue: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane

Rooms: P7-P11, Plaza Level, Grey Street Entrance

Griffith University is proud to partner with National Shelter and Queenslanders with Disability Network on its eighth NDIS Symposium. A Series that brings together people with disability, their families, researchers and professionals to ask some challenging questions about the implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Housing is fundamental for people to enjoy life, take part, learn, love and live with dignity.

For far too many people with disability, housing is part of their struggle to be included and to participate in community and family life. 

Read More


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Queensland Multicultural Month in August is going to be the biggest celebration of multiculturalism in Queensland. Seniors can visit to find out what’s happening near you. Queensland Multicultural Month in August is going to be the biggest celebration of multicultur

Queensland Multicultural Month

Queensland Multicultural Month in August is going to be the biggest celebration of multiculturalism in Queensland. Seniors can visit to find out what’s happening near you.


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PO BOX 15525, City East, QLD 4002
Office: +61-7-3316-2999
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