Culturally and linguistically diverse communities

Around 25 per cent of older people in NSW identify as being from backgrounds other than English-speaking, yet only 15 per cent of people accessing Seniors Rights Service come from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

These seniors can be difficult to reach through traditional English-language sources. To remedy this, Seniors Rights Service works hard to ensure information about our services, and matters affecting older people, is available to all.

With multicultural community groups, we have developed radio ads in English, Arabic, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Hindi, Punjabi and Greek on issues such as the risks of entering into financial arrangements with family members, potential effects on pensions, and legal rights.

Seniors Rights Service also advises on the Ethnic Communities Council of NSW’s “Speak My Language” Project. This community radio project – in 25 languages – helps older people understand recent changes to aged care and how to access it, and to make informed decisions about their health and wellbeing.

We run forums with Sydney’s South Asian, Italian, Chinese and other communities around financial abuse and access to aged care services.

With Legal Aid NSW, we hold a fortnightly legal clinic at the Northcott social housing estate in Surry Hills, which has a high number of Chinese-speaking residents. A Seniors Rights Service social work officer and bi-lingual lawyer assist at the clinic.

Since 2016-2017, we have been strategically targeting multicultural communities, through research projects and collaborations. We have increased older people’s engagement with our legal services, improved our education practices and developed new approaches. Seniors Rights Service staff are on a range of relevant committees and advisory bodies.

Our multilingual brochure is here.

To contact our Interpreter Service (TIS) call 131 450.