Older Women Count!
Grandmothers Advocacy Network (GRAN), ILC Canada and the University of Ottawa hosted a forum at the University of Ottawa entitled Older Women Count: Advocating for Human Rights in Africa, Canada and the World. ILC Canada President Margaret Gillis was the Master of Ceremonies for the event. The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister Status of Women spoke on her history of support women’s rights including her background as the executive director of a homeless shelter, the role of her ministry her fight towards ending the gender wage gap as well as the Prime Minister’s dedication to gender equality.
There was a panel held which addressed both the difference and similarities of the situations grandmothers face between Canada and sub-Saharan Africa. Ketty Nivyabundi spoke on violence against women in Africa including her own history as a refugee and advocate in Burundi. Valerie Wright discussed her experiences as a teacher as she advocated for a program of lifelong learning. Peggy Edwards talked on the state of health, poverty and human rights of older women in Africa. Dr. Linda Garcia gave a short speech on health, security and education for older women in Canada.
Dr. Martine Lagacé talked about the prevalence of ageism in our society, both open and hidden, and Dr. Gordon DiGiacomo spoke on the need for a United Nations convention on the rights of older people. A full report on the event is in development and will be released at a later date.
A report for the forum can be found here.
Age-Friendly Business Initiative Forum
ILC Canada and the University of Ottawa has hosted a forum on Age-Friendly Business from May 2nd to May 4th as part of Alumni Week. Speakers included the Minister for Families, Children and Social Development Jean-Yves Duclos and ILC GA Co-President Alex Kalache. The forum aimed to address myths concerning older people in the business world with expert panels on the changing meaning of old age, whether older consumers are a niche market and whether older workers are an asset in a competitive industry.
ILC Canada at Age Boom
ILC Canada Research Director Dr. Louise Plouffe spoke at the Age Boom Academy at Columbia University. In conjunction with the Robert N. Butler Columbia Aging Center, Age Boom was centred on dramatic demographic shifts around the world and the myths that accompany them. Her talk was centred on the myth that cities are for young people only, and related it to Age Friendly Cities protocol which she helped pioneer. Other speakers for the event included Ruth Finkelstein and Ursula Staudinger of the Columbia Aging Center, Linda Fried of the Mailman School of Public Health, John Beard from the World Health Organization and Maurizio Bussolo of The World Bank.
International Longevity Centre Canada Launch
The International Longevity Centre (ILC) Canada official launch was held May 27th from 4:00 to 6:00 PM at Huguette Labelle Hall on the University of Ottawa campus. Speakers included The Honourable Minister of the State (Seniors) Alice Wong, President of the University of Ottawa Allan Rock, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences Hélène Perrault, President of the International Longevity Centre Canada Margaret Gillis and Vice-President of the International Longevity Centre Canada Gloria Gutman.
Mrs. Gillis served as host for the event, giving a brief introduction on the history of the International Longevity Centre Global Alliance and the need for an International Longevity Centre in Canada.
President and Vice-Chancellor Allan Rock spoke of the major initiatives within the university before introducing Minister Alice Wong.
Minister Wong discussed past and future government programs centred on improving the lives of older people in Canada.
Dean Hélène Perrault gave a speech on the role the University of Ottawa will play in academic research for the study of gerontology and longevity.
Dr. Gutman presented on the changing demographics of both Canada and the world with a focus on the rise of centenarians and supercentenarians.
The talks ended with a short video by ILC Co-President and President of ILC Brazil Dr. Alexandre Kalache welcoming Canada to the ILC Family.