‘Everyone Deserves Respect’ AASHA and SRS

Seniors Rights Service and AASHA, a retirement and wellbeing service for seniors, partnered together to host ‘Everyone Deserves Respect’, a forum on ageing and rights. On Saturday, August 24 over 120 members of the Australian Indian community attended Wentworthville Community Centre to listen to guest speakers, our panel and enjoy entertainment. Guests were able to watch traditional dance and song performed by members of AASHA. Free health checks were also available as well as an array of traditional Indian food. 

Jodi McKay, NSW Opposition Leader and Shadow Minister for Multiculturalism was our keynote speaker and addressed the need focus on seniors rights, specifically in multicultural communities. Joseph La Posta, CEO of Multicultural NSW and Deputy Mayor, Tony Bleasdale also spoke at our event and all expressed their support of Australian Indian seniors and the support networks they aim to create.

‘Aged care is one area that we need to focus on’ McKay said at the forum. She expressed that initiatives such as this event should have ‘financial support of government’, urging Joseph La Posta to take more action to support seniors of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. All speakers acknowledged the importance of Seniors Rights Service and AASHA, organisations that reach out to diverse populations and hold community events, addressing important legal, health and social issues.

In agreeance with Jodi McKay, La Posta elaborated on this point and said he thinks ‘government has a far stronger role to play in engaging and supporting all multicultural communities, but in particular, our ageing multicultural population’.

Diana Bernard, our Education Manager, facilitated an engaging discussion with expert panellists Evonne Kalafatas – Human Services, Nalika Padmasena – Seniors Rights Service solicitor and Dr Proful Valanju – AASHA. They discussed how the abuse of seniors is often overlooked and ways in which individuals can protect themselves. The panel focused on financial abuse and addressed the potential risks when money is gifted, the importance of getting independent legal advice and ensuring that all transactions are made with relevant documentation.

The forum also showcased Indian music and dance, followed by a light meal. The event was communal, lively and positive. AASHA and Seniors Rights Service successfully raised awareness of common issues that seniors face. Guests also had the opportunity to talk to panellists after the formal presentation.

Seniors Rights Service is proud to work with AASHA and culturally and linguistically diverse communities. We look forward to working with AASHA again and helping to educate seniors and adults on how to protect themselves from experiencing any form of abuse. ful;\lsdpr